By: ALEX UANGBAOJE, Kaduna
A group, Society of Gynaecology and Obstetrics of Nigeria, Partnership for Advocacy in Child and Family Health and Scale (SOGON-PAS), has pledged to support the Kaduna State Government to ensure the domestication and implementation of Family Planning (FP) policies.
SOGON-PAS project Coordinator in the State, Professor Abdul Muhammed, disclosed this on Thursday when he led a team made up of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and Media on consultative visit to the State Commissioner for Health, Dr Paul Manya Dogo.
According the Professor, they were in the commissioner’s office to know the specific areas where the government is facing challenges in the domestication and implementation of family planning policies and how they can be of help to the government.
He commended the state government for it’s attention to family planning by creating a budget line to take care of consumables and commodities, but however added that there will be need for increase funding for child spacing in the state.
“Increased funding will increase availability, accessibility and affordability which in turn will improve standard of living and family health.
“You have started the good job but we believe you can do more. We are going to be pushing for increase funding for child spacing services in Kaduna state. We need more funding to be where we ought to be which is 46 percent contraceptive prevalent rate (CPR) as against the current 24 percent.
“We are also tracking budget around primary healthcare centres in the state to ensure regular availability of the commodities and consumables possibly at no cost.
“So, timely release of the fund is very important to make purchase ahead of time because we are having more people going for the services now.” He said.
In his response, the Commissioner, who appreciate the efforts of all stakeholders on FP in the state, said a lots of progress has been made especially in the area of new acceptance in the use of child spacing consumables and commodities, the number has moved from 94,000 in 2016 to 173,892 as at the end of 2017.
Dr. Dogo, noted that his ministry is one of the luckiest in the because health is the major priority of this government and the state has practically committed to the sector right from the beginning of this administration.
He explained that numerous advocacies by stakeholders on FP engenders most of the successes they are visible in the state.
“On the issue of FP, we are grateful for the success so far recorded. The governor was committed due to heavy advocacies in this area.
“That level of commitment is still there. You will recall that we have trained and we are still retraining our service providers especially on attitudinal issue so their character can improve enrolment.
“For every 200 spent on child spacing, we will be saving over 400 and thereby reducing maternal mortality, peace, improved economy and even check population explosion. He added.
On training request for FP service providers, the commissioner said, all trainings in the state has been centralised and domicile in the office of the chief of staff and that there are funds for that purpose, saying, “whenever there is need for training, we will utilise that funds.”
In his goodwill message, secretary, Family Health Advocates in Nigeria Initiative (FHANI), Iliya Kure, appreciated SOGON for bringing her organisation to Kaduna to child spacing.
Iliya, told the gathering that as part of working for the cause of child spacing in the state, a team of Journalists under Child Spacing Media Forum (CSMF) has been set up by Nigerian Urban Reproductive Health Initiative (NURHI) through Development Communication (Devcom) Network, adding, “if there is any issues being reported in Kaduna today, it child spacing.”