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Stakeholders told to be proactive on PHC bill

STAKEHOLDERS on health in Oyo State have been charged to be proactive in ensuring all tructures and programmes of primary health care are streamlined under one umbrella in a bid to improve the maternal health status in the state.

Dr Olusola Osinowo gave the charge at a Primary healthcare Under One roof (PHCUOR) Advocacy strategic meeting in Ibadan for civil society organisations. It was organised by Association for Reproductive and Family Health (ARFH) in collaboration with Evidence for Action.

Osinowo, noting its importance also to accelerating the process of reversing poor health indices in Oyo State, declared that ensuring that all structures and programmes of primary health care are streamlined under one umbrella was still faced by many challenges.

According to her, “all stakeholders need to understand the implication and challenges of having all structures and programmes of primary health care being streamlined under one umbrella, what is termed Primary healthcare Under One roof (PHCUOR). The time to speak is now before the bill on PHCUOR is passed into all law.

“The benefits of PHCUOR are many; it will make people more accountable, resources would be made available and primary health facilities better equipped. Since the agency in charge will be directly involved in funding and recruitment of personnel, disciplinary actions against erring workers can be taken.”

Mrs Adeola Olakunle, ARFH state campaign team lead, in a presentation on the current situation of PHCUOR in Oyo State highlighted challenges against PHCUOR to include poor facilities and human resources; leadership conflict, fragmentation; and lack of operational guidelines.

According to her, “if we have a system, we would have proper governance and commanding structure so that we can actually have a good ownership of the Primary healthcare setting.

“So what we can do is ensure that we take the PHC services to an enviable height, where at least the minimum healthcare package is given. This is the basis for this stakeholders’ meeting.”

Executive Secretary, State Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr Lanre Abass represented by Mrs Oluwakemi Olawoyin, appreciated efforts by developmental partners and nongovernmental organisations to ensure an efficient primary healthcare service in Oyo State.

She assured that the passage of the bill to ensure that all structures and programmes of primary health care are streamlined under one umbrella was a move in the positive direction.