Commissioner urges FG to prioritise healthcare as security issue
*Pharmaccess, PSN, PCN launch framework for strengthening pharmacy value chain
The Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris has charged the Federal Government to place healthcare as security issue.He said the nation’s healthcare system is currently in chaos and ineffective, with its global level being a major concern as Nigeria is rated very low in public health.
Jide, who stated this in Lagos during the launch of the Pharmacy Framework to strengthen the value chain, said it is the government’s responsibility along with stakeholders in the health sector to protect citizens from disease outbreak and other illnesses, adding that the state of the country shows that every Nigerian is vulnerable to biological threat, like Ebola, Meningitis C and Lassa Fever, with invisible disease, which calls for national security.
“Our first priority is to look at healthcare system as national security issue, the awareness is not there, our system is not effective and on a global issues, we have problem. Our healthcare system needs effective governance, which sets the pace and direction, of which without, there is no place to go,” he stressed.
Meanwhile, as part of efforts to address the issue of medicines and its accessibility in the country, Pharmaccess Foundation in collaboration with the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) and Pharmacist Council of Nigeria (PCN) has launched a framework that will strengthen the value chain of the pharmaceutical industry.
The Nigeria Pharma Sector, according to the Country Director, Pharmaccess Foundation, Mrs. Njide Ndili is faced with challenges, which include fund shortages, difficult pricing conditions, lack of adequate funding for expansion of local pharmaceutical industry, underproduction of essential drugs and largely dependent on importation of drugs.
She added that the standard of healthcare provided in the system is weak, noting that the largest organisation is the pharma industry, as medicine is vital in whichever level of care given to patients, which is why the framework has been established to enable community pharmacists and patent and proprietary medicine vendors to increase the scope and quality of their services through the provision of affordable financing. The Registrar, PCN, Pharm. Elijah Mohammed said the partnership is borne out of the need to address the unhealthy situation and to ensure adequate provision of equitable and sustainable access to lifesaving medicines within the healthcare system, as enshrined in the National Drug Policy.
In his remark, the President, PSN, Pharm. Ahmed Yakasai called for more collaboration of all stakeholders to improve the health sector, charging the federal government to ensure it keep to the stipulated date for the closure of the open drug market.
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