About 43 Primary Health Centres and 23 service providers have been chosen to benefit from the pilot phase of the access to finance and medical equipment leasing scheme of the Lagos State Government.
This was disclosed during a sensitisation workshop on the new initiative held on Friday at Ikeja, Lagos State.
In his keynote address, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, indicated that the initiative was needed to bring changes to healthcare delivery in the state.
He said, “What we are doing here is in line with our state’s strategic health development plan. The major strategy under this plan is what we are here to address. One of it is leadership and governance and the need for us to exercise partnership in health.
“The focus is that we want to empower and at the same time encourage the private sector to assist us in service provision in the health sector. We’ve been saying it for a long time that this is the time to start engaging the private sector for quality delivery of health services.”
He said the access to finance was a way of involving the private sector at the primary health care level, while the medical equipment lease initiative was meant to address the secondary and tertiary health care levels.
The commissioner also noted that the initiative, which was a pilot scheme, would enable the private sector to lead health care delivery service for a long time if successfully implemented.
“In any normal sector, the private sector drives the health delivery service and not the other way round as it is here,” he noted.
In her speech, the Lagos State Commissioner for Wealth Creation and Employment, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf, said the initiative was aimed at developing vibrant and viable health SMEs in the state to improve service delivery in primary health centres that are dilapidated, under-utilised or non-functional.
“Ultimately, this will enhance the availability of quality and affordable health care service to the state populace with the potentiality to create wealth and employment for Lagos residents,” she said.
Akinbile-Yusuf also stressed that medical equipment leasing would provide the platform for the state government to acquire world-class healthcare equipment at a comfortable financing and pay-back option.
The country director, Pharmaccess Foundation, Ms. Njide Ndili, described the initiative as a fantastic idea that would bring out the best public-private sector partnership in delivering quality health services to the people. She advised other states to key into the vision so that the country’s health sector would develop.
Speaking on the criteria for selecting 43 primary health centres and 13 health service providers across the state, the Director of Advocacy and Communication at Pharmaccess Foundation, Dr. Olamide Okulaja, said the PHCs were chosen because of their dilapidated state.
By: Dayo Ojerinde
The Punch News
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