By,; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi
UNICEF in collaboration with Melinda Gates Foundation and Dangote Foundation has been supporting the Bauchi State Government in fulfilling its promises of providing quality healthcare services to the people.
UNICEF Chief of Field Office, UNICEF-Bauchi, Mr. Bhanu Pathak recalled that the agency during the flag-off of Maternal Newborn Health Week supported the state with about N2 billion.
Mr. Bhanu Pathak, who was speaking at the hand-over of Yelwan Duguri Primary Healthcare Centre said the agency has done its part and requested the local authorities in-charge of the facility, staff, workers and the entire community to maintain the operational services of the centre.
“It is not enough to build a house; it has to be maintained. This is the responsibility of the local authorities here. UNICEF will always be here to support with all the necessary supplies, capacity building, we will work with the team, but the main responsibility of operations and maintenance is your duty”, he said.
Mr. Pathak said that UNICEF has supplied basic medical equipment to all the 323 PHC centres across the state, and is working closely with Ministry of Health and Primary Healthcare Development Agency (BASPHCDA) to provide quality healthcare services to the citizens of the state.
He explained that the agency in complementing the state government efforts in enhancing access to primary healthcare in the state has renovated and equipped a total number of 104 primary healthcare centres, and described the Yelwan Duguri PHC as one of the centres of excellence where it has also supplied and supported the renovation work.
Pathak revealed that the healthcare facilities are now 104 in the state renovated and handed over to the State Primary Healthcare Development Agency (BASPHCDA) out of the 107 agreed by the European Union- United Nations Children Fund (EU-UNICEF).
He urged beneficiaries of the EU-UNICEF Child Health intervention to ensure patronage and attend antenatal care, child birth services, immunization and other PHC services so as to fully benefit from the objectives of the project.
Receiving the renovated facility on behalf of the state government, the Executive Chairman of the BASPHCDA, Dr. Rilwanu Mohammed recalled that over the years, the healthcare centres have been in a dilapidated state.
Dr. Rilwanu noted that the agency has changed the narratives of the infrastructural decay through pragmatic approach in its quest to actualize democratic dividends to the people which include provision of quality and effective health system.
The chairman who was represented by a director in the agency, Alhaji Bello Mustapha said that the handing-over of the Yelwan Duguri healthcare facility has proven the determination of the state government to address the infrastructural decay in the state.