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Nigeria Health Watch

Top Ten News Items on Health out of Nigeria

Premium Times, 29 May 2016
EFCC summons top officials of Nigeria’s health ministry

Some key officials of the Federal Ministry of Health have been invited by the anti-graft agency, EFCC, as part of an investigation into alleged financial mismanagement, Premium Times learnt. Those invited include Abdulsalami Nasidi, the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC; Emmanuel Otu, who headed federal college of complementary and alternative medicine; and Ngozi Azodo, director health planning, research and statistics/millennium development goals. Others include Gwarzo Sanni, director Port Health Services and Durojaiye Adebayo, head of Lasser Fever Project/Avian Influenza Program. The officials will be quizzed from May 31 to June 2, according to documents sighted by Premium Times. “The commission is investigating a case of criminal conspiracy, embezzlement, abuse of office, diversion of public funds and money laundering in which the following MDAs in your ministry featured,” the EFCC said in a letter addressed to Amina Shamakin, Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health.

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ThisDay, 01 June 2016
Workers shut down health ministry, raise the alarm over corruption, misconduct

There was pandemonium yesterday at the Federal Ministry of Health, Federal Secretariat, Abuja as workers in the ministry shut down the ministry, preventing the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole and other officials from gaining access to the building for over an hour. The protesters also tackled the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Dr Amina Shamaki, whom they accused of corruption, highhandedness and gross misconduct since assuming office in the ministry. The workers who laid siege on the ministry and hunted for Shamaki, refused to listen to several pleas by the Head of Service of the Federation, Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita, to calm down. It was later learnt that Shamaki was whiskered away by gun-toting security personnel who had accompanied her to the office earlier yesterday morning. The workers who had been in loggerhead with Shamaki, further shut down power supply, switched off the elevators, calling for the redeployment of the Permanent Secretary from the ministry by the Head of Service of the Federation.

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Leadership, 31 May 2016
FG to address health workers agitation over Perm Sect

The Federal Government on Tuesday assured aggrieved workers in the Ministry of Health (FMoH) that their grievances were being addressed. Mrs Winifred Oyo-Ita, the Head of Service of the Federation, told the protesting workers at the Federal Secretariat that a committee had been constituted by her office to study their demands and make recommendations. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the workers, acting the under the aegis of the Federal Civil Service Senior Staff Union, staged a peaceful protest at about 10 a.m. at the FMoH. They are demanding for the redeployment of their Permanent secretary , Mrs Amina Shamaki. The workers accused the permanent scribe of abuse of office and high handedness, among others. However, Oyo-Ita addressed the protestors at the secretariat, urging them to allow the committee complete its assignment. 

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The Eagle Online, 01 June 2016
Niger State Government flags off rehabilitation of Primary Healthcare Centre

In line with the Federal Government’s policy of rehabilitating over 10,000 PHCs in the country within the next two years, the Niger State Government has flagged-off the rehabilitation exercise with the commissioning of its pilot project. The State Government has also kick started free surgery that is simultaneously ongoing in all the 25 Local Government Areas of the State. Performing the commissioning ceremony of the PHC in Beji village, the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, expressed happiness with Niger Sate Government for rehabilitating the PHC and making it functional for the benefit of local communities in Bosso Local Government Area. Adewole said: “Let me say it clearly: I am the happiest man on earth today. “When we made that policy decision that we needed to reposition health care in our country, we formulated a strategy for one functional primary healthcare centre per political ward"

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Leadership, 30 May 2016
FG begins health insurance coverage for IDPs
 
In response to the plight of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) across the country, the federal government has commenced a health insurance scheme targeted at ensuring that they get integrated into the larger society. Speaking at the flag-off of the pilot scheme at Sabon Kuchingoro, a suburb of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the acting Federal Commissioner of the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced (NCFRMI), Margarette Essien, said 80 households of six persons each making up 480 persons will be captured in the first phase. She said the health management agencies who have been engaged for the health insurance for the IDPs would ensure that they deliver the same level of services they give to federal government employees, and other key subscribers to the programme.
 
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Premium Times, 27 May 2016
Nigeria's ‘change agenda’ will give 100 million guaranteed healthcare access – Minister

Nigeria’s minister of health, Isaac Adewole, has said that the country’s “Change Agenda for Health” will guarantee access to effective and qualitative healthcare for about 100 million Nigerians. The renewed health agenda is geared towards achieving Universal Health Coverage through the Primary Health Care program, the minister said. Mr. Adewole said this at the second plenary session of the 69th World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland, on Wednesday. “As part of this Change Agenda, Nigeria has also recognized the potential of the health sector to reduce poverty, promote rapid socio-economic development and shared prosperity with its catalytic effect on individual productivity and that relevant process to harness this are being articulated,” Mr. Adewole said. He said Nigeria would ensure accountability is maintained while creating strong institutions, some of which will be deployed to demonstrate the country’s reprioritization of Non-Commutable Diseases (NCDs) and Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs).

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The Guardian, 02 June 2016
NACA inaugurates Procurement Committee for 2016 capital projects

As part of efforts to improve accountability and efficiency in its procurement processes, the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) has inaugurated a Procurement Planning Committee that will ensure a robust implementation of NACA 2016 capital projects. Director General (DG) of NACA, Prof. John Idoko, at the event, which was held at NACA Headquarters in Abuja, said the inauguration of the procurement planning committee is in pursuant to part V, section 21(1) of the public procurement act of 2007. Idoko called on members of the committee to put in their best in order to avoid past mistakes made, pointing out the importance of a viable procurement and supply chain processes. It was reliably gathered that the inaugurated procurement planning committee of NACA will prepare the needs assessment and evaluation of required goods, works and services for the implementation of 2016 capital projects by the agency.

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Punch, 02 June 2016
Strike: Relatives withdraw patients from Ondo govt hospitals

The families of patients on admission at government hospitals in Ondo State have begun to move them out of the hospitals as a result of the ongoing strike in the state, which has denied the patients attention. The organised labour embarked on an indefinite strike on Wednesday to protest against the failure of the state government to pay their salaries for five months. Members of the Nigeria Medical Association and National Association of Government General Medical and Dental Practitioners are also participating in the industrial action. Some patients on admission were seen leaving most of the government hospitals visited by our correspondent in Akure, the state capital on Thursday. A patient, who identified himself as Alfred Akinkunmi, told our correspondent that he left the state government hospital where he had hitherto been admitted after he was abandoned by striking medical workers there.

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Today, 02 June 2016
Why govt should make health insurance compulsory – NHIS boss

The Acting Executive Secretary of National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Olufemi Akingbade, has called on the Federal and State governments to make health insurance compulsory in the country. He called for a system that would support low-income earners and the vulnerable in the society who are unable to make contributions to the scheme. The call came as the NHIS commenced the training of state coordinators in states to make them better able to execute the scheme at the state level. Speaking at a capacity building workshop in Minna, Niger State, he called on state coordinators to work with their state governments towards making it mandatory for indigenes and residents to be under one health insurance scheme or the other for their people. He pledged to work with any state that is willing to adopt the blueprint of the insurance scheme.

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Nigeria Health Watch, 31 May 2016
Five takeaways of the 69th World Health Assembly from a Nigerian Perspective

The 69th World Health Assembly of the World Health Organization held between the 23rd and 28th of May in Geneva. It had a very heavy agenda and is reported to have had its largest attendance ever. We may have contributed to this, given it was our first WHA. High on the agenda was WHO reform, the response to public health emergencies, the lack of new antibiotics to address bacterial resistance, global shortages of vaccines and medicines, the fight against substandard drugs, and then there was the “small” matter of starting the process of electing a new WHO Director General. Every year, a guest speaker is invited to address the Assembly, and this year it was the fiery Christiana Figueres, the executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, who pulled off the Paris Agreement late in 2015.

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