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FCTA, USAID partner to improve primary healthcare systems in FCT

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The Minister of State for Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Dr Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu on Friday inaugurated the FCTA/United States Agency for International Development (USAID) steering committee as part of measures towards the revitalization of the FCT healthcare systems to deliver quality, affordable and sustainable preventive healthcare services to residents of the territory.

Dr Aliyu said the committee, while inaugurating it in Abuja, was a follow up to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between USAID and the FCT Administration on December 17, 2020, to support the revitalization of FCT healthcare systems.

In a statement signed by her special assistant on media, Austine Elemue, the minister said the MoU sought to address the weak healthcare systems, especially the Primary Health Care (PHC) performances and the root causes of poorly functioning health systems in the territory.

She said through the partnership, the FCT Administration would improve the capacity of the FCTA to plan, allocate and manage resources as demonstrated by increased budgetary allocation for PHC, and increased expenditure for primary health care.

“Other milestones that could be achieved through this partnership include increasing the coverage of FCT’s minimum benefit package for PHC to 20 per cent of the residents of the FCT in 2020, 30 per cent in 2021, 40 per cent in 2022, 50 per cent in 2023, 60 per cent in 2024.” She added.

To drive the operationalization of the signed MoU, the minister charged the committee to serve as an avenue to promote transparency, the use of data for decision-making and problem solving, adding that the committee would engage other stakeholders such as members of the Senate and House of Representatives as required.

On her part, the USAID Mission Director, Anne Peterson, who joined the inauguration virtually, identified the primary healthcare services as the foundation of strengthening universal health coverage.

She noted that USAID recognized the important roles the healthcare system plays in guaranteeing universal access to health services and improving the health outcome while expressing the hope that the new steering committee would provide a road map in guiding primary healthcare partnership.

“USAID is committed to partner with FCT Administration to improve primary healthcare services by creating and strengthening systems that will improve and assist our primary healthcare inequitable distribution of resources.” She stated.

Members of the committee include, FCT Minister of State (Chairman); Mission Director, USAID (co-chairperson), FCTA Permanent Secretary; Secretary, Health and Human Services Secretariat (HHSS); Executive Secretary, FCT PHCB; Director, HPRS; Director, FCT Health Insurance; Director, Treasury and Deputy Director, Health Financing Equity and Investment as Secretary of the committee.

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