Lagos revitalising, repositioning PHC platform as “touch point’’ for communities- Abayomi

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Lagos.

The Lagos State Government says it is intensifying strategies to revitalise and position the Primary Healthcare platform as the touch point for communities.

Abayomi spoke to Abuja365 on the sidelines of the Association of Medical Officers of Health in Nigeria (AMOHN), Lagos Chapter, Conference 2023.

“Infrastructure is very important; in Lagos, we have redesigned our primary healthcare facilities.

“For us, to drive our communities to access healthcare primarily at the primary healthcare level is the key.

“ So, we are turning our attention to invigorating the primary healthcare platform, both in terms of infrastructure, in terms of manpower, in terms of governance, in training and resources.

“These are three or four major areas that we are paying attention to’’.

He said that moving forward, the state would be building PHCs using prototypes which are designed to be low energy, very functional and taking into consideration, infection prevention control.

“In other words, while you are trying to get your blood pressure measured, you are trying to get your birth control attention.

“You are not susceptible to catching an infection, while you are waiting to get some other type of care’’.

Abayomi explained that citizens need to understand the governance that overrides primary healthcare platform.

He also advised Nigerians to go first to PHCs before secondary and tertiary health institutions.

“So, these are the things we are trying to put in place in Lagos –to revitalise and reposition primary healthcare platform as the ‘touch point’ for our community.

“So, if you are in the community, you don’t need to jump over your primary healthcare facility and go to a general hospital.

“You go to your PHC in your community, in your ward to assess your health. And if they can’t manage your condition, they will refer you to a General Hospital.

“ However, we would rather you don’t go to the general hospital as your first point of contact, but that you go the primary healthcare first,” Abayomi said.

Earlier during the conference,  a former Chairman, Senate Committee on Health, Senator Olanrewaju Tejuoso, highlighted that the challenges of our primary healthcare system, though numerous, were not insurmountable.

Tejuoso  was the Chairman of the occasion.

He said: “The challenge of inadequate human resource cuts across every parastatal, though that of the healthcare system seems overwhelming with the constant brain drain on the nation.

“The PHC system still needs a whole lot of financing to take it to a global standard and equip it with state of the art technology that is appropriate for each community.

“PHC needs a whole lot of financing to take it to global standard and equip it with state of the art technology that is appropriate for each community.

“ E-medicine should at this time be the song on our lips, but we still find ourselves battling with provision of basic necessities such as water, sanitation and hygiene.

“We hope to get our Primary Health Care Under One Roof policy actualised to the fullest and running smoothly unhindered, then perharps, we can move on to more daunting grounds like telemedicine.’’

Dr Tunde Osoba, AMOHN Chairman, in his speech, said that the theme of the event, “Overview of National Primary Health Care under One roof performance: Nigeria’s journey towards Universal Health Coverage’’ was apt as we begin to reposition the primary health system to address challenges militating against the achievement of UHC.

“The primary health care under one roof needs to be fully implemented in Lagos as it  is the solution to several of our challenges from human resources for health, monitoring and evaluation, sustainable PHC funding to minimum service package, governance and leadership”

Abuja365 reports that the annual conference  is part of a series of activities conducted by the association of Medical Officers of Health in Nigeria, Lagos Chapter.

It creates an opportunity for members to reflect on the activities of the past year and appraise issues affecting the primary health care system. 

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