Former NMA president laments poor budgetary allocation to sector

Dr.-Osahon-EnabuleleFOR Nigeria to ensure adequate programme for its citizens, full implementation of the National Health Act (NHA) has been advocated which is believed would check the menace bedevilling the country’s health sector.

Vice President, Commonwealth Medical Assoctaion (WAR) and immediate president of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) Dr. Osahon Enabulele stated this yesterday at this year’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Edo state branch of NMA where he lamented that the country loses not less than $1 billion annually on medical treatments abroad most of which he said go to India.

Speaking on the topic “The Nigerian Health Sector; Burning Issues And The Way Forward”, Enabulele lamented poor budgetary allocations to the health sector where he said Nigeria has failed woefully to implement the agreement by African leaders during the 2001 African Heads of Government held in Abuja Nigeria that 15 per cent of the countries’ annual budget be allocated to the health sector.

He lamented that Nigeria only allocated 4.3 per cent of its total budget for the health sector in 2009, 3.7 per cent in 2010, 5.4 per cent in 2011,6 per cent in 2012, 6.04 per cent in 2013, 5.7 per cent in 2014 and 5.4 per cent in 2015. “The situation is even worse at the state and local government levels where the aggregate sectoral allocation to the health sector ranges from one to three per cent.”

Enabulele said there was need to consistent education and advocacy for more investments in the country’s health sector by political office holders. “Despite her high level of political and economic development, in the year 2013, the United States of America invested as much as 20 per cent of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in health. Similarly, in 2003, the United Kingdom’s investment in health, National Health Service was almost twice the budget of education and defence.”

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