World Health Day 2019: Universal Health Coverage takes center stage; C’River well positioned for the attainment of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) before the SDG3 year 2030 target.

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The 2019 World Health Day campaign comes up on the 7th of April every year, and the theme of this year is ‘Universal Health Coverage: Everyone, Everywhere’. In Cross River State, the event featured free medical services in select Health facilities across the State along with advocacy and sensitization drive across communities.

In May 2018, the Cross River State Government launched its State Health Insurance Scheme christened Ayadecare to ensure both citizens and residents of the State have access to quality and affordable healthcare across board without suffering any financial hardship.

The State has available 54 well equipped Primary Health Centers (3 per LGA), 15 General Hospitals, 3 Ayadecare Referral Hospitals currently under construction simultaneously across the 3 Senatorial Districts to complement the 3 Mobile Hospitals procured specifically for the scheme, as well as the Cross River State Pharmaceutical Company among others.

“In Cross River State, under the leadership of the health-friendly Governor, Sen. (Prof.) Ben Ayade, our policies and developmental strides has helped us check the boxes peculiar to us in the WHO’s essential health services indicators for UHC.

We Started by identifying some of our institutional voids through community and facility sensitization using the media and opinion leaders, and we organized the first ever State Health Summit where all the stakeholders were brought together and we launched our Cross River State Strategic Development Plan I and II and other policy documents to cater to some of these bottlenecks.

This followed the renovation and upgrading of health facilities across the State with state-of-the-art medical equipment with emphasis on PHCs. Then the accreditation of all schools of Nursing and Midwifery and College of Health Technology to cater to Lower and Middle care Human resource for Health needs.

Consequent on these activities the HIV prevalence rate dipped to 1.7% and 23% reduction in facility based Maternal Mortality Rate, we became the Model State for the fight against NTDs globally by RTI International and USAID, we’re adjudged the State with the best child survival indices by UNICEF, and we won the World Bank’ award for the most improved State on Health.

All of these achievements, and many more, are indications that the State is well positioned for the attainment of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) before the SDG3 year 2030 target.” Dr. Inyang Asibong; Commissioner for Health.

The WHO uses 16 essential health services in 4 categories as indicators of the level and equity of coverage in countries, they include; Reproductive, maternal, newborn and child health, Infectious diseases, Non-communicable diseases and Service capacity and access.

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