The Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH), has inaugurated the National Tertiary Health Institutions Standards Committee (NTHISC), the second since the National Health Act (NHA), was signed into law in 2014.
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, during the inauguration on Tuesday in Abuja, said that the current administration had commenced a holistic health reform, and with the lessons learnt from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the committee would provide a great opportunity to rejig the tertiary health care services.
“It is imperative to refocus the institutions to become centres of excellence in health care and stem medical tourism which costs Nigeria billions of naira annually.
“In constituting this committee, FMoH has carefully selected seasoned health care professionals with expertise in different aspects of the health care ecosystem, supported by the statutory regulatory bodies in the health sector,” he added.
Ehanire quoted the NHA 2014 functions of the committee includes; “Advise the Minister on matters affecting the establishment of tertiary hospitals in Nigeria; Prepare periodic master plans for the balanced and coordinated development of tertiary hospitals in Nigeria.
Amongst others were establish minimum standards to be attained by the various tertiary health facilities in the nation and also inspecting and accredit such facilities; Make relevant investigations and recommendations to the federal and state governments on tertiary health care services in the national interest.
“Advise the federal government on the financial needs, both recurrent and capital, of tertiary health services and in particular, investigate and study the financial needs for training, research and services and make appropriate recommendations for these;
Set standards and criteria for allocation of funds from the federal government to tertiary health institutions and monitor their utilisation, source for grants as laid down by the committee,
“Collate, analyse and publish information in relation to tertiary health care services annually; Lay down broad operational guidelines in all areas of management for use by the Tertiary Hospitals Management Board; Monitor and evaluate all activities and receive annual reports from the tertiary hospitals and supervise annual peer review, and Carry out such other activities as are conducive for the discharge of its functions under the NHA,” he quoted.
The minister noted that he may give the committee directives of a general nature not relating to the particular matters with regard to the exercise by the committee of its functions under this Act.
The Chairman of the Committee, Prof. Abiodun Phillips, who spoke on half of the committee, said that the inauguration of this committee was an achievement.
“Because I know the committee has been in existence for some years now. Remembering to inaugurate another committee to go on with what has been achieved.
“Is something praiseworthy. When the Hon. Minister had called me that he wanted me to be in charge, or to be chairman of this committee.
“He expressed his wishes and want this committee to achieve a lot on the promises of his 100 per cent support. I can assure you that we will all do our best not to disappoint you,” he assured.
According to Phillips, And I’m promising you we shall not fail to do that. As you have also promised, social support, and we are promising you that we shall perform. As far as since the NHA was actually brought into being.
He noted that the NHA-2014 that means that all the institutions in the country at the moment were performing without the act guiding them.
“No license given to them. And nobody has been monitoring their performance. And this is part of what we are supposed to do. I wish we could do that by the special grace of God.
“This committee is more of a commission, and the National University Commission. And then, I believe, the performance is supposed to be like a commission on the Ministry of Health, because somebody else will monitor what is going on, somebody else who’s will set the standards when you say you are establishing a tertiary health institution, you have to know is not just having the money or making buildings.
“The personality administration has really said it such an artist-teacher is supposed to do, as opposed to a secondary institution should be tackled,” he explained.
Dr. Mairo Mandara, consultant obstetrician and gynecologist, assured Nigerian of doing their very best, as she noted the committee would be dispassionate insanely, and tell the truth.
Mondara who also have extensive knowledge of public health systems and managing maternal and child health programs in Nigeria, called on Nigerian to support them to question the norms, “there are a lot of things that are going wrong.
“We need to stand up tall and stand by the truth and say what is right and also push, it’s not going to be comfortable, it’s not going to be easy, but if we are going to improve, we’ve got to tell ourselves, the truth, because there was a time when the medical practitioners were next to God.”
“And now, we are as sellers of spinach in the market. We need to trace back our steps, and with your guidance and with your help, and with the support of God, I’m sure we’re going to do a good job,” she pledged.
The Membership of the committee comprises,
Prof. Abiodun Phillips, -Chairman
Dr Mairo Mandara (Northeast),
Dr David Imuse (South-South),
Prof. Adewale Oke (Southwest), Dr. Saleh Ngaski Garba (Northwest),
Pharm. Mashood Lawal (Northcentral).
Dr Chinwe Igwilo (Southeast).
“Representatives of the Chief Executives of the Tertiary Health Institutions: Dr Adedamola Dada (FMC Ebute Metta), Prof. Ahmed Ahidjo (UMTH Maiduguri) Representatives of the: Federal Ministry of Education, Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, and Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation and our ex-officio members from the diaspora: Dr Ibrahim Bolaji (UK).
“Izoduka Asoro (USA), Private Sector Health Alliance, represented by Dr. Tinuola Akinbolagbe. Registrars of the 14 regulatory bodies in the health sector are statutory members and these include, National Postgraduate Medical College, Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria, Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria, Pharmacist Council of Nigeria, Medical Rehabilitation Therapist Registration Board (MRTB), and Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (MLSCN), Dental Therapists Registration Board.
“Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians Registration Board,Community Health Practitioners Registration Board (CHPRBN),Dental Technologist Registration Board of Nig. (DTRBN), Institute of Chartered Chemist of Nigeria,
Health Records Registration Board of Nigeria (HRORBN), Radiographers Registration Board of Nigeria (RRBN), and
Institute of Public Analysts of Nigeria (IPAN).
“The Secretary of the Committee is the Director and Head of Department of Hospital Services, FMOH, Dr, Adebimpe Adebiyi.”
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