The Governor of Delta State, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa disclosed on Thursday at the State’s House of Assembly during his presentation of the 2018 budget tagged “Budget of Hope and Consolidation”, that his government has allocated a total amount of 6.6 billion Naira for the health sector in the state.
Okowa went further to reveal that his government has also allotted 1 billion Naira for the improvement of the health insurance scheme, particularly the Under-5 and Free Maternal Health Care Scheme. In his words, “our guiding philosophy for this sector is the establishment of a qualitative, affordable and accessible health care delivery system in the State; hence we are focusing on infrastructural development of our hospitals and primary health care centres, as well as the procurement of drugs and cutting-edge medical equipment in major healthcare facilities across the three Senatorial Districts.” He also emphasised that “The Free Maternal and the Free Under-Five Healthcare programmes that were initiated by the previous government in 2007 and 2010 respectively, are still being implemented”.
The governor proceeded , stating that “In fulfillment of our pledge to deliver accessible, affordable and qualitative healthcare, the Delta State Contributory Health Commission was established in 2016; with just N7, 000 as premium, the health insurance scheme is already providing pre-paid health services to 112,169 registered enrollees; the scheme is currently functional in 63 secondary health care centres, while 97 primary healthcare facilities in the State have been designated to commence provision of services under the scheme.”
He went further to disclose that “The Delta State Health Insurance Scheme has kicked off and its cardinal objective is to give Deltans access to quality and affordable healthcare no matter their socio-economic status; the sum of N1.2 Billion is provided for the Commission’s activities during the 2018 fiscal year.”
He further emphasised that his administration “has infused vigour and vitality into the teaching hospital at Oghara with critical personnel changes and the overhauling of the MRI and CT scan facilities that are now functional. In addition, we have instituted Public-Private Partnership for some diagnostic services to ensure sustainability, and a grant of N142m was released to the institution to meet pressing needs. Infrastructural work at the Asaba Central Hospital has continued to receive priority attention from this administration and is now almost 70 per cent completed.”
Speaking of the environmental aspect of the health sector, he disclosed that his government is ready to curb the menace in the state. He said,“this administration has embarked on urban renewal in key towns and cities across the state which involves rehabilitation, reconstruction, and construction of new roads, clearing of drains, environmental sanitation, public water supply, and beautification in the form of leisure parks and gardens.” “The sum of N2.2 billion is proposed for the Ministries of Environment and Urban Renewal in the proposed 2018 capital budget,”
Okowa assured citizens of the state that his government will ensure imminent growth and development of the state and will rescue the state from becoming a dumping site through his administration’s housing development scheme that has been initiated.