With about $600,000 expended by the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) for the procurement of relief equipment to health institutions in the fight against COVID-19 will address shortcomings plaguing the healthcare sector.
The donation of 189 equipment, comprising regular patient monitors, Intensive Care Unit (ICU) monitors and dual oxygen concentrators to these institutions, is part of the NSIA’s plans to invest and develop viable projects to promote policies that strengthen the health sector.
At the presentation of the equipment to the 21 federal healthcare institutions across the six geopolitical zones, represented by their Chief Medical Directors, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the NSIA, Uche Orji, said the gesture is aimed at supporting the containment of the recent surge in the reported cases of COVID-19 infections.x
They are also meant to augment Federal Government’s ongoing effort to enhance clinical care available to COVID-19 patients as well as add to the stock of critical medical equipment needed in hospitals across the country.
He mentioned other measures and interventions the Authority had taken to support government to include the release of $150million from the stabilisation fund to assist the government in addressing some emerging fiscal risks and the recent decline in revenue, and also the collaboration with Global Citizen, to create the Niger Solidarity Support Fund (NSSF) amend others.
To create a sustainable model for the equipment, he said the NSIA has outlined a model which ensures that the beneficiaries would also receive after-sale support from the manufacturers, GE and Smartkraft through training and maintenance.
In her remark, Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, restated the Federal Government’s commitment to sustaining the economy and return swiftly to normal.
While the uncertainty persists, she tasked Nigerians on the need to adapt fast to the changing reality, and the need for the country to step up and put the resources that are required to drive fundamental change.
She said major steps have already been taken by the government to contain the impact of the pandemic on Nigerians and its response to COVID-19. Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, said despite successes recorded before the second wave, the PTF will not rest on its oars, adding that Nigeria is still at war with the virus and ensuring it does not spread further.
Similarly, Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, noted that it is through interventions like the Basic Healthcare Intervention Fund, National Health Scheme to provide financing that the healthcare system will move forward.
He maintained that the interventions would reverse the trends on medical tourism, noting that the problem is not about lack of skilled personnel or equipment but lack of proper management.
“From there, we are translating to secondary healthcare to revamp and work with the state governments, who are in control with the secondary healthcare sector.
“The plan is to bridge the gap and create connections, which require some investments and creativity to inculcate knowledge and skills from tertiary healthcare and some participation and encouragement from the governors to rebuild the secondary healthcare,” he said.