The Special Adviser to the Ondo State Governor on Health, Dr Jibayo Adeyeye, has disclosed that the state government has accessed $37m out of the $50m World Bank loan for the funding of health projects for the Nigeria State Health Investment Project (NSHIP).
Adeyeye, who disclosed this during a stakeholders’ meeting in Akure, the state capital, called to deliberate on how to sustain the benefits of NSHIP facilities which began in 2014 and will end in 2020.
Adeyeye, who said the money was disbursed on Performance Based Funding (PBF) policy, had benefitted 532 health facilities in the state, expressed optimism that the state would be able to access the balance of the loan and would not pull out of the arrangement.
He noted that the project had impacted positively on health care facilities and delivery in the state and stressed the need to do all that are necessary to sustain the project beyond 2020 when the World Bank pulls out.
He said: “The loan has been spent judiciously renovating the health centres and doing many other things. But the reality is that there must be a way to ensure that we continually have the resources to do what that loan was doing for us.”
Apart from this, Adeyeye advocated for the introduction of the Contributory Health Insurance (CHI) as a major way through which the state can sustain the benefits of NSHIP projects and other health programmes.
According to him, as part of efforts to actualise the take-off of the Contributory Health Insurance Scheme, the state government had embarked on a Health Insurance commission through an act of the state House of Assembly and had been signed into law by the governor.
“The analogy is that as of today, the health budget is around N4 billion in one year and it translates to about N1.00 per capital. But if we institute health insurance scheme where half of the citizens pay N1,000 a month, that will give us about N2 billion in one month; that is N24 billion in one year and which translates to about N100 billion coming to the health sector in four years.
“We borrowed N14 billion from World Bank. If half of the population keys into the scheme, we will pay back the loan in one year and our health system will be sustainable,” he said.
Also speaking, the Executive Secretary of the Ondo State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Mr Francis Akanbiemu, said there was need for stakeholders in the health sector to do all that are necessary to ensure that the benefits achieved through the World Bank NSHIP programmes are sustained and improved upon.
Akanbiemu said mandatory Contributory Health Scheme remains the only way through which Universal Health Coverage can be achieved.
The Executive Secretary added that the Performance Based Funding policy of the NSHIP project had changed the narrative of health funding and results in the state health care delivery.
Akanbiemu disclosed that about 600 Primary Health Centers (PHC) across the 18 local government areas of the State under the N-SHIP in order to reduce maternal and child deaths in the state.
He said the primary health centers have been serving as mini Mother and Child Hospitals to complement the existing ones in the State.
He therefore enjoined all stakeholders to put all hands on deck to improve on the achievements achieved in the last four years.