The Rivers State Government has won the 2014 outstanding Government Health Care Programme Excellence Award.
Rivers beat Lagos, Kano and Ondo States to clinch the prize in recognition of its excellence in the field of health care in Nigeria.
Receiving the award, which is the highest honour for excellence in the field of health care in Nigeria, on behalf of Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi at the Eko Hotel and Suites in Lagos, the Rivers State Commissioner for Health Dr. Tamunoiyoriari Sampson Parker said the Amaechi-led administration decided to do things that will touch the lives of the Rivers people.
“So we did it in our own way by rebuilding the health system from the foundation”, he said.
Parker said the decision to focus on primary health care met with a lot of challenges and criticisms but the government was not deterred because of its conviction that 70% of disease burden could be taken care of at the primary health care level.
He said the State had built, staffed and equipped over one hundred primary health centres across the state, noting that it is not just about buildings but service delivery.
According to the commissioner, “each primary health care centre is headed by a medical doctor who lives in the premises to attend to patients round the clock and as a result of this, Rivers State has achieved one hundred percent routine immunization by the World Health Organization’s assessment in the year 2013″.
He said, “this means that women now take their children to primary health centres for immunization; it also implies that children with diarrhoea and malaria are now getting asses to the primary health care centres.
“It also means that women are now going for antenatal along with other siblings and also encourage their husbands to follow them to the health centres to check their blood pressures”, the commissioner further stated.
Parker, who stated that the state government has been serving its people silently, also affirmed that Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi is grateful for this recognition, stressing that “for us, this will encourage us to work harder towards providing a healthier and wealthier Rivers State”.
The Nigerian Health Care Excellence Award is an initiative of Global Health Project and Resources in partnership with Anadaach group.
The award is designed to celebrate and recognise the best individuals and organizations that have contributed in a remarkable manner to the improvement of healthcare delivery in Nigeria.
Prof. Emmanuel Adeyemo Elebute won the Life time Achievement Award at the occasion.
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