Sanwo-Olu at Chatham House, accuses world leaders of a sustainable health system –
Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has called on world leaders, global think tanks and public office holders to work towards building a sustainable healthcare system for all and facilitating the access for the poor and underserved.
Speaking on “Universal Health Coverage in Nigeria: Optimizing Institutional Opportunities and Partnerships for Success” this weekend at the Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House, Governor Sanwo-Olu instructed a think tank to optimize institutional opportunities and partnerships for achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC).
“To achieve UHC, developing countries must first strive to provide their residents with a minimum package of basic health services, delivered free at the point of care using subsidies, controlled premiums or a pre-defined tariff system, in government-regulated or public or private-affiliated establishments,” he said.
Governor Sanwo-Olu said Lagos State, as Africa’s most populous city, financial hub and Africa’s 5th largest economy on the continent, has strategically strengthened the health system in pursuit of universal health coverage.
He said Lagos State was using policies to strengthen its health systems, pushing for the achievement of UHC, which the state sees as a journey and not a destination.
“In Lagos State, we believe that policy is the single most effective tool that governments can deploy in the pursuit of stronger health systems and ultimately to move closer to UHC. The right policies will lead to the development of robust health financing systems that will meet the needs of our huge and growing population,” he said.
Speaking on some of his administration’s policies aimed at strengthening the healthcare system, Governor Sanwo-Olu said that the Lagos State government has consistently increased its budget allocation and efficiency to healthcare over the years. years, noting that his government’s desire is to eventually match Abuja. Declaration of 15 percent.
He said that his administration, through its capital infrastructure program, is upgrading and renovating its existing primary and secondary health facilities in the short term and has started building new primary, secondary health facilities. and specialties designed for the future.
“We recognize that the government cannot fill the funding gap in the health system without the support of the private sector. In an effort to encourage public-private partnerships, we have established various institutions such as the Office of Public-Private Partnerships (OPPP) and IBILE Holdings, a private company owned by the State of Lagos with the aim of engage with the private sector. These institutions are mandated to facilitate and expedite PPP opportunities in Lagos State.
“We understand the need for good governance within the administrative structure of the health system and therefore we have inaugurated councils for all agencies within the Lagos State Department of Health. This has gone a long way in building the capacity of line sub-agencies, keeping them focused on their mandates.
“We believe in health insurance as a tool we can leverage to quickly cover ground in our quest for UHC and so we have put our full support behind the new National Health Insurance Law and mandated our management agency of Lagos State Health. (LASHMA) to domesticate and enroll Lagos residents into the Lagos State Social Health Insurance Scheme.
“We are leveraging partnerships with global organizations such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Global Fund, among others, to explore innovative ways to strengthen our primary health care system. In fact, I believe that the decisions of these organizations to directly fund a sub-national like Lagos State speaks to the clarity of our vision and our commitment to delivering results,” he said.
Governor Sanwo-Olu also disclosed that his administration has entered into innovative programs in partnership with the private sector to upgrade equipment in state secondary health centers and set up specialized health facilities.
“We have launched two pilot projects: Lagos State Oncology Center and Omotunde Ajoke Cole Smart Hospital. The success of these projects will mark a new dawn in our healthcare system, where the best of the public and private sectors will come together to provide affordable, world-class healthcare.
“We are working hard to improve the quality of human resources we have in our health centers. We also use a meritocracy system to appoint medical directors (MDs) in health centers and provide ongoing medical and administrative training.
“We understand the critical role played by logistics within our health system and we ensure that people, essential medicines and consumables are easily transported within our health system,” he said. .
Governor Sanwo-Olu said that while the Lagos State government is working on innovative mechanisms to pay for healthcare, it must also ensure that it puts in place a healthcare delivery system able to provide decent health services to the people of the state.