NEW YEAR MESSAGE: DESPITES 2020 CHALLENGES, WE GAVE OUR ALL AND THE RESULT IS OVERWHELMING-DR. JANET EKPENYONG.

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By: Simon Ushie.
I will like to thank God for His grace and mercy which pulled us through the year 2020.
 Despite the challenges faced, it’s obvious that we all gave our all and the result is overwhelming.
In 2020, we were able to improve on our services as attested by our clients, we were able to  administer millions of vaccines in their most potent stages to children  in all 18 Local Government Areas, a feat that I must commend all our frontliners, despite the hostility health workers get to face in Communities where they still see Immunization as a hoax and place superstition to it with unverifiable claims.
It is obvious that despite the Nationwide lockdown and shutting down of places of work and business areas, the Primary Healthcare Centres still recorded daily influx of people with no resistance from our staff to discourage them from coming, that act is commendable and shows high level of professionalism.
My profound gratitude goes to the Executive Governor of Cross River State, Senator Professor Ben Ayade for his unequivocal support to the health sector and for all his innovative health programs which has placed the state on the national map and top on programs implementation as we work towards achieving universe health coverage.
My appreciation also goes to his dear wife, our mother, Dr Mrs Linda Ayade for her support in the actualization of a healthy society for our children, through her support,we have recorded a drastic reduction in maternal and child mortality indices which is a thing of pride .
My appreciation also goes to His Excellency, the Deputy Governor of Cross River State, Prof Ivara Ejemot Esu, the father of immunization for all his guidance and support to the health sector.
My respectful appreciation also goes to the Speaker of the Cross River State House of Assembly Rt Hon Eteng Jones, The Chairman House Committee on Health, Hon. Dr Ekpo Bassey and other members of the house for making laws that have improved the lives of our people especially the Traditional Birth Attendants regulatory laws, it shows that the fight to Safeguard our mothers and children is  appreciated and collectively we shall reduce maternal and child mortality to its barest form.
I must salute the efforts and supports of the Honourable Commissioner for Health, my dear sister, Dr Betta Edu for her doggedness towards ensuring we strengthen and improve our health system and for the great leadership exhibited. I also want to appreciate my dear sis Dr Etcheri Ansa and Sir Chief Godwin Iyala, the DGs of SACA and SHIS respectively, as well as all the management and staff of the Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency and the state Ministry of Health for all your support and commitment to see that we achieve UHC.
I also wish to thank my management team for their expertise and hard work during the past year and their strong partnership with program officers and staff responsible for the important services we provide to our patients and communities.
I would like to also appreciate the various Directors of Local Government Health Authority who coordinated the affairs of staff under their watch and the entire LGA team that helped in the promotion and improvement of Primary Healthcare Services across the 196 political wards of our state.
We have worked strongly with our many partners throughout the year. Indeed our broader relationship network has been essential to many of our successes throughout the year and will be critical to our future success. We are proud to say, the year 2020 has exposed so many of our workers to innovations in the health sector as their capacity have been built through the numerous technical assistance offered to us I some program interventions like HIV/AIDS,  Family planning, Infection and Disease control, Immunization, Maternal and child health amongst others.
Reflecting on the past year (2020) I would most respectfully  like to acknowledge some of our champions including the Traditional Rulers council, particularly HRH, The Obong of Calabar and The Obol Opon of Ugep, The leadership of the Christian and Muslim Association of Nigeria, Cross River State chapter, the Educational sector, Chairmen of council and the media who through your support,we were able to reach some of the hardest and seemingly unaccessible areas across the creeks and up the hills,You made health interventions and activities look simple and that has helped in improving our indices on the national dash board.
In 2021, we are poised to achieving more through the support and cooperation of all, our desire is to build and renovate more health Facilities, employ more staff to man our health centres and posts, build capacity of our staff to match up with their colleagues across the nation, and to provide quality, affordable and all round available services beating environmental and geographical barriers .
Once again, I want to thank you all for the love and amazing support we enjoyed in 2020, I wish for better collaboration in 2021 and beyond.
God bless you and do have a wonderful and fruitful year ahead.
Dr Janet Ekpenyong
Director General of the Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency.

Amawu Cletus Albert Amawu

I'm a Journalist, Host of The Verdict, your voice of conscience on FAD FM 93.1, Calabar, an Administrator, Activist and Social Change Agent.

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