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TETFUND Calls For Comprehensive Health Reforms, Innovation In Nigeria

Arc. Sunday Echono, the executive secretary of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND), has emphasised the urgent need for comprehensive health sector reforms and innovations in Nigeria, citing the country’s historical health advancements and current challenges.

Echono made the call yesterday in Abuja during the inaugural African Health and Medical Service Awards Nigeria (AHMSAN), organized by Africanstride International Magazine.

He emphasized the need for recognizing outstanding contributions within Nigeria’s health and medical sector and expressed his appreciation to the publishers of Africanstride International Magazine for organizing the awards.

He underscored the significance of recognizing health workers who continue to serve the nation despite challenging conditions and the allure of opportunities abroad.

“Our health workers deserve recognition, acclaim, and appreciation,” Echono said. “For those who resist the temptation to search for greener pastures abroad and are toiling day and night to keep us healthy, events like these are crucial for acknowledging their sacrifices.”

Echono reflected on Nigeria’s once-thriving health sector, recalling a time when Saudi princes sought medical care at Nigeria’s University College before independence.

He contrasted this with the current state, where many Nigerians now travel abroad for medical treatment, highlighting the need for renewed efforts to rebuild the country’s healthcare system.

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He stated that TETFUND’s commitment to supporting the health sector by funding the establishment of medical and health sciences faculties and specialized institutions.

He added that recent efforts to establish new medical institutions and the successes of existing ones, such as the Nigerian Medical Association’s initiative to build the University of health and medical Sciences, are steps in the right direction.

Addressing the critical doctor-patient ratio in Nigeria, Echono stressed the importance of increasing the number of medical institutions to produce more healthcare professionals.

He highlighted the alarming number of Nigerian doctors emigrating, which exacerbates the nation’s healthcare challenges.

Echono also emphasized the importance of reliable health information, praising the new magazine by Africanstride International for its role in providing expert-verified health advice.

He announced TETFUND’s support for the magazine to ensure its accessibility to all Nigerians.

Echono urged the organizers to make the AHMSAN awards an annual event and encouraged other organizations to recognize and reward achievements. “Recognizing talent and rewarding achievement is essential for improving standards in our country. It motivates individuals to excel and inspires others to strive for excellence,” he stated.

On his part, the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Health Sciences (FUSHO), Prof. Innocent Ujah, emphasised the critical role of food security in improving health outcomes. “If we ensure access to good food, we can reduce anemia in pregnancy, preterm deliveries, and miscarriages,” he noted.

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He stressed the urgent need for reforms in Nigeria’s food security and health governance to address the growing challenges of malnutrition and inadequate healthcare delivery.

Also, the Project Director for AHMSAN, Henry Adesola, emphasised that AHMSAN is dedicated to highlighting Africa’s journey towards achieving quality, sustainable, and affordable healthcare.

He stressed that the colloquium, themed “Renewing Hope in the Nigerian Health Sector,” brought together esteemed health leaders, practitioners, administrators, innovators, change-makers, and icons who are driving a renaissance in both public and private sectors.

Adesola reiterated that AHMSAN 2024 distinguished itself by honoring outstanding individuals and organizations considered pillars in their respective fields across the healthcare industry.

Source: dailytimes

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