The Africa Health Budget Network (AHBN) has enjoined the federal government to prioritize commitments for women, children and adolescents in order to ensure quality health service delivery for them.
The Partnership and Engagement Lead for AHBN, Oyeyemi Pitan, made the call yesterday in Abuja during the maiden meeting for the Collaborative Advocacy Action Plan for Reproductive Maternal, Newborn, Child, Adolescent, Elderly+Nutrition (RMNCAEH+N) in Nigeria. It was organised with the support of the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health (PMNCH).
She said there was need to prioritize accountability for women, children and adolescents-related commitments such as the Family Planning 2030 and Every Woman Every Child (EWEC) among others.
She called for the inclusion of family planning in health insurance schemes, and the provision of youth-friendly services for young people at the various levels of care.
She said, “We are hopeful that the current government will take them out of women children and adolescents very seriously.”
She said civil society organizations must work together to improve advocacy and also support the government in ensuring that all the commitments are realistic, and implemented.
She said,” We can’t just be complacent. We need to support the government. We need to ask questions; What are the steps being taken, how do we get it?”
The Chief Executive Officer of the Vaccine Network for Disease Control, said it was a welcome development that the elderly had been captured in the strategic plan but that there was the need to also include people living with disabilities.
Offor, who is also the chairperson of the health sector reform coalition, said the Collaborative Advocacy Action Plan in Nigeria must be done in an audience-friendly manner and should be an open source that everyone, including the media, can access it in order to hold government accountable when they make those commitments.
She said the strategic plan must also be done in a phased manner to ensure successful implementation.