Stakeholders yesterday urged the Federal Government to accelerate efforts towards local production of antiretroviral drugs, vaccines for HIV, COVID-19 and other communicable diseases.
According to them, there is an urgent need to encourage local manufacturing of active pharmaceutical ingredients to make Nigeria less dependent on importation of pharmaceutical raw materials. They made the call in a communique issued after a national symposium organized in Abuja by INGO Third Sector Resource, in collaboration with African Business Roundtable and Phoenix Africa.
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The communique was signed by the coordinator, Jamila Mohammed Kolo and the secretary, Chijioke James.
They stressed the need for innovation and creativity in putting Nigeria’s health system on the global map for healthcare provision thereby conserving the funds otherwise used for health tourism and importation of medicines.
They asked the federal government to provide access to funding through appropriate financial institutions as soft loans for the purposes of domestic production of ARVs, vaccines and other medicines.
The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, represented by the Director of Food and Drugs Services in the ministry, Olubunmi Aribeana, said dearth of active pharmaceutical ingredients was thwarting local vaccine production in Nigeria.