Post COVID-19: Bayelsa PHC not prepared for another pandemic —NGO

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Ebiowei Lawal | Yenagoa


A non-government organisation (NGO) has scored Bayelsa State Primary Healthcare (PHC) system low in effective healthcare service delivery.

It observes saying that from assessment, health centres across the state are ill-prepared for another pandemic such as COVID-19 which devastated the world few years ago.

This was part of a field report presented at a one-day symposium organised by Connected Development (CODE) with the theme “Unveiling measurable accountability strategies on COVID-19” in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital.

The symposium, with a focus on strengthening accountability measures on COVID -19 intervention funds project (SAM-C) was attended by traditional rulers, government officials, NGOs, lawyers, journalists, women and youth groups.

Addressing the participants at the event, the Secretary-General of CODE, Mukhtar Modibbo, said that a recent field report revealed that about 80 percent of the health centres in rural areas, including the outskirts of Yenagoa metropolis lack vital social amenities such as water, electricity and access road network.

He said the NGO is assessing the status of primary healthcare in six states for necessary action and listed the six states to include Ondo, Ekiti, Edo, Bayelsa, Kebbi and Zamfara, stressing that from findings, Bayelsa needs to do more to be able to tackle another outbreak of diseases and other health emergencies at the grassroots.

He also tasked the government to show more political commitment towards building a strong primary health system by equipping the primary healthcare facilities with necessary equipment and personnel and particularly, making it accessible and affordable to the people.

Modibbo said: “The symposium was organised to get people’s view and understand what is going on in the state and across primary healthcare development agencies.

“We have been to several primary healthcare centres to look at three different thematic areas, from COVID-19 administration to personnel and service delivery as well as infrastructural development across the primary healthcare centres to ascertain the level of preparedness for any other pandemic.

“We interact with people to tell us whether or not, what we have as our report is something that is the reality of what is going on in the state. What we are trying to achieve is to prepare the state for any other pandemic.

“We also intend to prepare the people to understand that primary healthcare is their first port of call whenever they feel sick and let the government understand that conducive environment is key to health.”




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