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UHC in Nigeria

What is UHC?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), universal health coverage (UHC) is the organization of health care systems that has provides health care packages to all or any members of an outlined population, through the supply of economic risk protection within the course of accessing necessary health-care services. 

In straightforward words, it may be known as a method that everyone and communities receive the health services they have while not suffering money hardship. It includes the complete spectrum of essential, quality health services, from health promotion to provide treatment, rehabilitation, and palliative care across the life course. 

Since the adoption of the idea of UHC by the World Health Assembly within the year 2005, followed by its adoption within the 2030 property Development Goal (SDG) Agenda because the eighth target of SDG three, bigger international attention is currently centered on its action. 

UHC in Nigeria-

Nigeria joined the universal health coverage Partnership in 2018 that supports the event and implementation of the world UHC communication strategy in line with a national universal health coverage agenda. It conjointly assists within the operationalization of the national health strategy, strengthening health security and capability building for medical experts among alternative activities. you’ll be able to access country documents by clicking here.

While the successes recorded up to now vary in several countries and continents, the case of Nigeria remains terribly pathetic. Nigeria’s main strategic mechanism for achieving UHC is her National insurance theme (NHIS), which may be a conducive social insurance theme. Since the formal launch of the NHIS on June half dozen, 2005, no more than 4percent of Nigeria’s population has been lined by the theme. This text is so geared toward reviewing Nigeria’s progress toward universal health coverage, with specific stress on its challenges, and with some recommendations proffered on, however, Nigeria will realistically attain it.

How to measure UHC?

Monitoring progress towards it ought to concentrate on two things:

  • The proportion of a population which will access essential quality health services  
  • The proportion of the population that spends an oversized quantity of home financial gain on health.  

WHO role in UHC-

It has firmly supported the 1948 WHO Constitution, which declares health an elementary right and commits to making sure the very best come-at-able level of health for all.

WHO is supporting countries to develop their health systems to maneuver towards and sustain it, and to watch the progress. however WHO isn’t alone: WHO works with many alternative partners in several ways and for various functions to advance UHC around the world.

Key health system challenges in Nigeria-

  • Inadequate resourcing of health 
  • restricted political commitment to health and first health care 
  • Underfunding of primary health care and a scarcity of public confidence 
  • Lack of clarity on roles and responsibilities at totally different levels of the system 
  • Weak institutional capability to develop implementation plans 
  • Human resource shortages 
  • Poor public money management 
  • restricted absorbent  capability within the health system 
  • Vertical programming and silos produce inefficient systems 
  • Lack of alignment between donors and domestic priorities 
  • intensive, however, fragmented personal sector

Leveraging COVID-19 –

COVID-19 has bestowed Nigeria with an extra health challenge on high Associate in Nursing already high unwellness burden and frequent outbreaks of rising and re-emerging infections. Globally, COVID-19 has highlighted the crucial links between health security and economic prosperity, with the COVID-19 pandemic dealing a devastating blow to the Nigerian and world economy. Nigeria’s economy shrunk by half a dozen.1% year-on-year within the second quarter of 2020.

Although the center of an epidemic may appear Associate in Nursing at an inconvenient time to initiate reform, it may be sufficiently descriptive to catalyze major amendments. China’s expertise throughout the respiratory disease-CoV-1 occurrence shone a light-weight on the inadequacy of its primary health care system and triggered major new investments; public sector expenditure on health care in China inflated virtually 14-fold between the SARS occurrence in 2003 and 2018.

Strategies Stakeholder engagement strategy –

  • Clearly outline the key stakeholders and convey them, board, for conversations 
  • The vision has to be shared by all stakeholders answerability at the political level 
  • Electability isn’t presently joined to performance or to this health care coverage.
  • Political will for UHC has to be strengthened; stress on catalyzing competition Communication strategy.
  • a transparent communication arrangement. 
  • to all or any key stakeholders – the leaders and also the diode 
  • authoritative UHC champions area unit required to drive support at commanding National minimum standards; subnational specifics 
  • Tracked, adapted, enforced, and incentivized regionally

How will Nigeria build progress towards UHC?

Many countries are already creating progress towards it, though everyplace the COVID-19 pandemic compact the provision and also the ability of health systems to produce undisrupted health services. All countries as well as Nigeria will take action to maneuver earlier towards UHC despite the setbacks of the COVID-19 pandemic or to take care of the gains they need already created. In different countries wherever health services have historically been accessible and reasonable, governments square measure finding it more and more troublesome to reply to the ever-growing health desires of the populations and also the increasing prices of health services.

Moving towards universal health coverage needs strengthening health systems altogether. strong finance structures square measure key. Once folks have to be compelled to pay most of the price for health services out of their own pockets, the poor square measure is usually unable to get several of the services they have, and even the poor are also exposed to monetary hardship within the event of severe or long-run ill health. Pooling funds from required funding sources (such as government tax revenues) will unfold the monetary risks of ill health across a population.

Where are the key priorities for action going forwards?

Key priorities 

  • Focus on states to drive UHC 
  • Build an alliance with the private sector.
  • Leverage the experience of COVID-19 
  • Enlist a champion who can: 
  • Re-engage stakeholders at all levels on the need for it. 
  • Coordinate activities between stakeholders. 
  • Ensure sustainable funding. 
  • Gather data to bring insight and actions towards it.

UHC Partnership Supported Products and Services-


Nigeria can do more to improve health care outcomes and tackle poverty, by increasing coverage of health services in their system, and by reducing the impoverishment associated with the payment for health services. UHC  is a means by which all individuals and communities can have access to the full spectrum of essential and effective health services, which include: promotion, prevention, treatment, rehabilitation and palliative care without suffering financial hardship. … universal health coverage is an important step towards social inclusion and equity and Nigerians Need it.

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