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FG inaugurates national plan for health security

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THE federal government has taken a move to strengthen response in 19 public health threats and improve response to health emergencies, by rolling out a National Action Plan for Health Security, covering Year 2018 to 2022.

Inaugurating the action plan recently in Abuja, the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, said the implementation would help to entrench and resolve to build a safer and prosperous Nigeria. He added that preparedness for health security is like an insurance policy for the national health prosperity.

He noted that ,”Although we hope that we never face a deadly epidemic like the West Africa Ebola epidemic of 2014-2016, we need to ensure that we are ready at all the times”.

According to him, Nigeria failed in a joint external evaluations of the International Health Regulations in June 2017, which demonstrated many critical gaps that needs to be filled to protect the country from next major event. In his words, ” As I listened to the result of the evaluation ,we scored 40 per cent, which is failure

He disclosed. that in medical school, you need to score 50 percent to record a pass”.

The minister expressed regret about the failure, saying, “We are deeply worried about the result, and then I did remark that we should be bothered about the base line and what happened thereafter. This result he said, has helped to guide the NAPHS planning processes and to develop a roadmap for security strengthening in Nigeria. He added that while Nigeria was making progress in national health emergency, the development of the National Action Plan for Health Security was what was required to achieve more success.

In a remark, the Director-General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu said that the framing of the plan was to demonstrate that health doesn’t only have health benefit but also provide economic and security benefit.

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