June 19, 2021

NEWS AGENCY OF NIGERIA

Africa's Media Giant

NASS holds annual legislative summit on health in May

National Assembly complex

National Assembly complex

By Kingsley Okoye

The Joint National Assembly Committee on Health has announced that it would hold the 4th second edition of the annual legislative summit on health on May 23 to 25, in Abuja.

The Chairman of the joint committee, Sen. Ibrahim Oloriegbe (APC-Kwara), said this at a news conference in Abuja on Thursday.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the annual Legislative Summit on Health is a product of the Legislative Network for Universal Health Coverage.

It is primarily of legislators with members of the Executive Arm of Government and non-state actors participating to provide institutional contexts focused on the health sector.

It is convened annually to provide a platform for Nigerian legislators to confer and resolve on matters pertaining to the resilience of the health sector to provide equitable quality of care to citizens.

He said the overall objective of setting up the legislative network was to effectively leverage statutory functions of the Legislature in Nigeria for improved health financing towards Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

Oloriegbe said the specific objectives was to achieve improved appropriation to health sector by deepening the knowledge of legislators on economic, social, health and political benefits of improved health funding towards UHC.

According to him, it is to ensure prompt and adequate release of allocated funds by working with the lawmakers to make relevant central budget agencies accountable for fund releases.

He said the summit was to elvolve better ways to ensure timely passage of relevant high quality health laws especially the legal framework for State Supported Health Insurance Scheme (SSHIS).

According to him, the previous editions of the summits had contributed to accountability for implementation of the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF) guideline in line with the National Health Act.

He said the summit had resulted in annual fiscal appropriations inclusive of the BHCPF one per cent of the consolidated revenue fund to provide a minimum package of basic health services to all Nigerians since the first summit was convened.

He said the summit would review the state of the health of the nation and the national health system, the role of adequate financing as the nexus for UHC and health security in Nigeria, and what opportunities exist for the health sector to leverage.

“It will also leverage on lessons from COVID-19 national and subnational responses to improve the health security landscape,” he said.

“It is our sincere hope that this year’s summit to build on past successes to impact positively on the health sector and Nigeria as a whole.

“The summits have continued to be a rallying point of learning, interaction and agenda setting for legislators and other key actors in the health sector across the country,” he noted. (NAN)

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