The Federal Ministry of Health has disbursed N12.7 billion of the budgeted N55 billion one percent of the consolidated fund for health care fund.
The fund, it was learnt, was disbursed on May 17 before the dissolution of the last cabinet.
It was also gathered that another tranche will be disbursed between now and September.
The breakdown of the disbursement according to findings shows that N6.5 billion (50%) went to National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NLHCDA) got N5.8 billion (45%) and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), N327million.
Disclosing the disbursement yesterday at the Association for Nigerian Health Journalists (ANHEJ) technical session and briefing, Dr. Aminu Magashi Garba of the Community Health and Research Initiative (CHR) said the money has already been disbursed as contained in the 2018 Appropriation Bill.
He noted that another 25 per cent has been allocated to the account of the Ministry of Health for further disbursement.
“This money has been disbursed to the three agencies and more money will be disburse till August and September. We are also informed that another 25 per cent has already been allocated to the account of the Federal Ministry of Health,” Garba said.
He requested the agencies to make public how they have utilised the releases for the benefit of the ordinary people.
Said he: “They are the gate keepers to the Nigerian people, so they have to tell us what they are using the money for. The money given to them should be used for drugs at the Primary Health Care centre (PHC), for immunisation, infrastructure development, live saving drugs for pregnant women and toilets in PHCs. It’s a big shame that most PHCs lack a good convenience for workers and patients. The money for NCDC should be used for emergencies preparedness for disease outbreak. So the heads of agencies should not complain about lack of funds.”
Also, Chika Offor, the Chief Executive Officer, (CEO) of Vaccine Network, said the money must work for the Nigerian people.
“The role of each agency of health is well stated out. The role of NPHCDA is to maintain the health centre, get staff when necessary and to be sure there are drugs. For NHIS, is to make sure that people in the community have access to those already established work centre. People no longer go the Health Centre because they don’t believe anything is happening there. So this money must work for the Nigeria people,” she said.