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Don’t commercialize Primary Health facilities – Group Warns Ekiti LG chairmen

The Civil Society in Malaria Control, Immunization and Nutrition, ACOMIN, has expressed concern over the undue pressure being mounted on primary health facilities in Ekiti State by council chairmen to make money.

The group which described such acts as absurd and inimical to healthcare delivery at the grassroots called on the state governor, Mr Biodun Oyebanji to prevail on the council chairmen and LCDAs to stop such barbaric steps.

According to ACOMIN, the major purpose of primary health facilities is to provide health care support to vulnerable persons at the grassroots and not a business centre, adding that most of the services rendered at the facilities such as immunization, TB and Malaria are sponsored by donor agencies.

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The group spoke in Ado Ekiti, Ekiti State capital during the advocacy-focused media meeting designed to create awareness of the Covid-19 Response Mechanism and the Resilience and Sustainable System for Health (C19RM/RSSH) Grant.

The (C19RM/RSSH) Grant project is an initiative of the Global Fund aimed at mobilizing communities and relevant stakeholders to support government, towards equipping the health facilities with necessary materials that could enhance healthcare delivery as well as create better awareness on community involvement.

Addressing journalists, the Executive Director, Environmental Development and Family Health Organization, EDFHO, Sir Olu Ogunrotimi said some local government chairmen in the state have commercialised PHCs in their local government areas, thereby reducing patronage and access to healthcare.

He called on the Ministry of Health to convene a state dialogue between PHCs and development workers for a shared understanding of PHC roles.

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Sir Ogunrotimi noted that the (C19RM/RSSH) project had yielded positive results as Community-Based Organizations (CBO) in charge have been able to facilitate renovations of some health facilities across the state, employment of security guards to man them and provision of drugs and the necessary equipment to support operations.

In his contribution, the coordinator, TB Network in Ekiti State, Dr Taiwo Benson called on government to deploy more nurses to the facilities, saying less than 80 nurses are available in all the primary health facilities across the state which he said was too poor.

Dr Benson appealed to well-meaning individuals, corporate bodies and institutions to support healthcare facilities in the state so as to enhance their service delivery.

Others who spoke appealed to communities to endeavour to patronize the primary health facilities in their areas and take ownership of the facilities to enable better service delivery.

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