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2022: Nigeria’s heath budget short of AU declaration

The proposed health budget of N711, 282,402,983 for the health sector by the Federal Government is short of the declaration by African leaders....

The proposed health budget of N711, 282,402,983 for the health sector by the Federal Government is short of the declaration by African leaders.

In 2001, heads of state of African Union countries had met in Abuja and pledged to prioritise the development of the health sector by allocating at least 15 percent of their annual budgets to improve the sector.

Over the years, the Nigerian Government has been allocating between five to six percent of its budget to the health sector.

Rwanda, Swaziland, Ethiopia, Malawi, the Central African Republic and Togo have since kept to the promise of the Abuja declaration.

Experts say underfunding of the health sector accounts for brain drain by medical personnel, dilapidated health infrastructure, inadequate and obsolete equipment, and stock-outs of essential medicines, poor health indices, among others.

They say keeping the “Abuja Declaration” promise would increase the amount of resources spent on health and if spent efficiently, could improve access to quality health services and save lives

The breakdown of the 2022 budget estimates shows that for the ministry of health, N11.8 million was proposed for cleaning and fumigation services, N84. 2 million for purchase of computers and N44 million for purchase of canteen kitchen equipment.

A sum of N54.05 billion was allocated to the Basic Healthcare Provision Fund (BHCPF).