#PHC4UHC : 8% budgetary allocation too little for effective health financing – LASPHCB

Philip Shimnom Clement in Lagos

The Permanent Secretary, Lagos state Primary Health Care Board (PHCB) Dr. Tayo Lawal has said the eight per cent budget allocation for health sector is too little to achieve an effective health financing system in Nigeria.
According to him, the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared that each country should make available 15% of it’s annual budget for health which has never been achieved in Nigeria.
He stated this while delivering a paper “Universal Healthcare Delivery in Lagos state: Funding Framework” which is part of the ongoing local study tour by the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) currently ongoing in Lagos state with the support of development Research and Project Centre (dRPC).
According to Lawal, “The highest budgetary allocation that has ever been set aside for health is 8%  which is too little to do much in the area of health care delivery. 15% has been proposed by WHO but I am not sure any budget health has ever crossed 8%.
“Since 1991 we started with 1.7% and now it is about 8%, even some states budget just around 5% for health which I think cannot achieve much,” he said.
Asked about the budgetary allocation of Lagos state for health, the permanent Secretary said as at 2018 budget, the government allocated N92bn for health which is slightly above 8% of the budget.
He however added, “We are committed to delivering health care financing and will be looking at better ways to finance the budget for health to be more effective. This is because we have about 305 primary health care centres, 26 general hospitals and one teaching hospital.
“In addition to our commitment in delivering a qualitative health care service in Lagos state, government renovated 78 PHCs in the last three years and employed 177  health personnel ranging from doctors, nurses and community health workers.
“We also have 57 comprehensive primary health care out of the 305. We call them comprehensive because they operate 24hrs and are well equipped with doctors and other health personnel,” says Lawal.
GovernanceNews earlier reported that the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) in collaboration with development Research and Project Centre (dRPC) are carrying out a local study tour in Lagos to discover different ways of achieving effective health care delivery.