The Global Vaccine Alliance (GAVI) and the Federal government of Nigeria have committed $2.7 billion to Strengthen Routine Immunization and Primary Healthcare Services in Nigeria between 2018 -2028. So far, GAVI has committed $1.03 billion while the Federal Government’s counterpart contribution is in excess of $1.9billion. This investment is to enable Nigeria provide vaccines for her children over the next ten years (2018-2028).
The Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole made this announcement in Abuja on Monday, June 11, 2018 while briefing the Press on the GAVI Board’s approval of Nigeria Strategy for Routine Immunization and Primary Health Care System Strengthening.
The Minister said that out of $1.03 billion from GAVI, $773 million is for vaccine procurement while $260 million is for health system strengthening.
Adewole said “with this approval by GAVI, Nigeria stands to save the lives of additional 1,539,651 under- age1 children by 2028 by driving immunization rates up to 85% in all the states and improving the supply chain”.
The Minister explained that the approved resources would also be used to transform the organizational structure of Primary Health care (PHC) in Nigeria as well as consolidate gains in polio eradication and revitalization of the Primary Healthcare System.
The Minister said that PHC caters for over 70% of the population who are in most need of health. ‘’Ten thousand PHC centers will benefit from this where each PHC is fully equipped to provide the basic minimum package of care”, he explained.
Speaking on previous contribution to Nigeria by GAVI, the Minister said that in 2001 the Federal Government and GAVI entered into an agreement to strengthen immunization system across the country.
He said, during that period, GAVI supported the country with lifesaving vaccines which included PCV, IPV ad pentavalent vaccines. It also provided additional support for non-vaccine operation.
“This amounted to a total contribution of $ 732,130,326 and as a result, had saved over 2 million lives in the last 17 years”
Earlier, the Executive Director, National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Faisal Shuaibu, who expressed delight with the approval of the fund by GAVI, said that there would be a lot of expectations surrounding the initiative and Nigerian government was ready to deliver.
In his remarks, the WHO Country Director to Nigeria, Dr. Wondi Alemu said that the approval by GAVI is an indication that Nigeria Government is working hard to improve Primary Healthcare system in Nigeria.
He said that WHO was very ready to support any additional work that may be required in executing the project.