For the Health sector in Nigeria to experience that big shift and the much needed revolution, it is expedient for the federal Government through the federal ministry of health to immediately remove all bottle necks and release Basic health Care provision Funds to States to boast their health system as contained in 2014 Health act. While some states have had the funds released to their CBN account only 2 states in Nigeria have accessed the funds, One year after it was launched by President Buhari.
Cross River State which is one of the 35 states held by the several bottle necks has appealed to President Buhari to help facilitate the release of the basic health care provision funds for a smooth and speedy delivery of health care to Cross Riverians as well as other states in Nigeria. Speaking, Hon Dr Betta Edu while taking over the leadership of the State Steering Committee on Basic Health Care Provision Fund which before now was headed by the Permanent Secretary pleaded with the Federal Government to facilitate the process through the Minister of Health.
The State Steering Committee on Basic Health Care Provision Fund (SSC-BHCPF) is responsible for managing the funds set aside by the Federal Government which is 1% of the consolidated revenue for provision of Basic Health Care. The Permanent Secretary briefed the Commissioner that the three major activities/processes that are left for that to be achieved are staff training and facilities baseline assessment as Cross River state has met all other obligations. So far 15 States have made progress while only 2 States have been able to access the money as CRS is yet to access theirs due to the bureaucratic bottle necks involved.
Taking over the chairmanship of the committee officially, the Hon Commissioner for Health commended the committee for being steadfast as she charged all members and partners to get their hands on the plough so they can get it right especially in basic health care delivery. She lamented on the slow/bottleneck process of implementation as she called on the Federal Government to speed up the process. She ended by commending Sen Prof Ben Ayade for showing commitment beyond words as 100m naira has already been released. She enjoined all cross riverians to keep faith in the Governor stating that with the new drive in the health sector, quality health care will soon be heard, seen, and felt.
In attendance was DG CRSPHCDA and DG SHIA as well as NHIS representatives and other.