Osun State government says its dream of bringing healthcare to all is gradually becoming a reality with the flag off of the massive revitalisation of nine General Hospitals and 332 Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs) across the state.
Speaking in Osogbo, the state capital, Governor Gboyega Oyetola said, with the initiative, healthcare facilities will be guaranteed in all communities in Osun State from middle of the year.
The Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole who was also in Osogbo said the effort was the first of its kind in the Southwest and expressed hope that “other states will soon emulate” Osun state.
Adewole described Osun as a model in the health sector and applauded the government for complementing the Federal Government’s efforts to enhance healthcare service delivery.
Voice of Nigeria recalled that the rehabilitation which took off in Ejigbo last month is part of the $20 million World Bank grant to the state. The grant was facilitated by the Federal Government, and the counterpart fund of Osun State Government.
In addition to rehabilitating and equipping Ejigbo hospital, about four-kilometre road from the centre of the town through the hospital to the Ejigbo campus of the University of Osun will also be fixed. The contractor has three months to deliver.
The Osogbo ceremony symbolised the commencement of work on the first batch of 150 PHC. It was witnessed by traditional rulers, political leaders and people from diverse backgrounds.
According to Oyetola, on completion, each of the 332 Wards in the state will have a functional, well-equipped primary healthcare centre.
“There will be no need to be going to the General Hospital to treat malaria and common aliment. This administration has deliberately decided to take quality and equitable healthcare delivery to the grassroots.
“We have instituted the Osun Health Insurance Scheme to complement the state’s health architecture just as our government makes healthcare affordable to its citizens under the Scheme and pays premium for the highly vulnerable.
Oyetola reiterated government resolve to continue to prioritize the people’s needs, with health taking the lead.
“We owe a substantial chunk of the funding of health in the state to the Federal Government, which provided the enabling environment for states of the Federation to partake in the World Bank’s Saving One Million Lives Program for Result (SOML P forR) initiative under the supervision of the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole” he added.
The governor said the revitalization programme is a model, designed to make all the 332 PHCs structurally habitable, medically equipped, efficient personnel-driven and qualitative service delivery- conscious.
The Supervisor of Works, Mr. Remi Omowaiye, said the project “will be comprehensive enough to cater for structural deficit of dilapidated buildings and ensure they have all essential facilities of standard and model health centres.
“The model health centres are designed with good waste and sewage system, provision of water, landscaping and fencing, electrification, and supply of generating sets.
“It will also include motivated and purpose-driven workforce, medical equipment, drugs and consumables that will be technology-driven through a coordinate and software application for maintenance of medical activities and other operations of each facility.”
Omowaye said government will also make adequate provision for road network to ensure patients get to the PHCs for treatment, particularly in rural places where access to the public health facility is difficult.
He added that the state government had already spent N87.7 million to buy equipment for the facilities which include HIV Test kits and medical consumables, which were recently inaugurated by the governor.