The House of Representatives during the Thursday plenary session urged President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately declare state of emergency in the health sector.
The lawmakers also emphasized the need to commence the implementation of the Abuja Declaration with the view to ensure adequate budgetary allocations for the health sector in the 2017 budget proposal to be transmitted by the President to the joint session of the National Assembly.
The resolution was passed following the adoption of the motion titled:”Urgent need to avert a national health crisis through revitalization and adequate funding of primary healthcare system.” sponsored by Chike Okafor (PDP-Imo).
In his lead debate, Okafor noted that 30 percent of the 34,000 primary healthcare centers which treats about 80 percent of the ailments such as malaria, pneumonia, diarrhoea and services including ante-natal and normal deliveries, minor injuries, immunization and other preventable diseases in the country are dysfunctional owing to inadequate funding.
He lamented that: “Nigeria is about to witness a shortage of vaccines as major donor agencies commence gradual withdrawal of support for funding vaccine procurement in Nigeria, and if adequate budgetary allocation is not made to the health sector, the result would be better imagined.”
While reiterating on inadequate funding, the lawmaker said this might have contributed greatly to the non-attainment of the health related aspects of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in Nigeria before the programme lapsed in December 2015.
Also speaking, Joseph Adebayo (APC- Lagos) bemoaned the state of hundreds of primary healthcare centres spread across the country without drugs and electricity.
In supporting the motion, the lawmaker said it is very keen for government to pay adequate attention in funding the sector.
The House to this end, the House mandated its committee on Healthcare Services to convene a public hearing to identify, harmonize and streamline additional sources of funding from Donor Agencies, National and International Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs).