KADUNA, Nigeria (21/1/2015) – Barely a year after Kaduna State Government says it had reached over five million patients with its Free Maternal and Child Health Services Programme, a group of civil society organisations is asking the State Government to enact a law that will strengthen the system.
The group, Maternal and Child Health Civil Society Partnership (MCH-CS Partnership), said in a meeting in Kaduna that the free maternal child health care service as rendered in the state was not yielding the desired result due to several factors, among them, absence of law, drug stuck out syndrome in health facilities, inadequate skilled personnel and weak management system.
Chairperson of the group, Mrs. Dorcas Adeyemi, told the forum that a research conducted by the partnership revealed that the Programme had suffered from many challenges.
Adeyemi added that “lack of FMCH guidelines, stock-out syndrome, irregular supply of drugs, supply not based on needs and poor referral system’’ were preventing the smooth implementation of the programme.
She commended the state government for the establishment of State Primary Health Care Agency (SPHCA), but called for the full implementation of the Agency’s structure to address administration and funding challenges of PHCs in the State
Vice Chair of the group, Malam Garba Muhammad, said the group, comprising of 10 different civil society groups that work on several thematic areas was set up in 2009 to advocate for improved FMCH in the State.
Muhammad said the group had since its establishment focused on advocating for affordable and quality health care delivery services.
The FMCH Programme was flagged off in 115 PHCs and 30 General Hospitals in the state in 2007. It was meant to cover all the public health facilities by 2009, but no single facility was added since its introduction in 2007.