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WAHO insists quality human resources driving force for effective healthcare outcomes

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By Joyce Remi-Babayeju

The Director General of the West African Health Organization , WAHO, Dr. Aissi Melchior Athanase Joel has emphasized on the need to engage quality human resources in the health sector to achieve effective healthcare outcomes.

Dr. Aissi stated this while declaring open the Health Experts meeting which is part of the technical sessions for the 25th Ordinary meeting of the ECOWAS Assembly of Health Ministers (AHM) with the Theme “Quality of Healthcare in the ECOWAS region: analysis of Determinants and Perspectives” holding from 13th to 17th May, 2024 in Abuja.

He said that the theme of the meeting is in line with the objective of the organization on the health norms and the standard of Health quality for human care in all forms, aimed at respecting the health rights of all at all times.

Speaking on attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs in the African subregion, Dr.Aisssi said,“we have five years to attain the deadline set for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, and therefore the pressure is mounting on all States in general and those of the ECOWAS region particularly, considering the progress made and the effective evidence of mechanisms and approaches capable of strengthening and amplifying the effects of our actions in the hope of achieving the expected results in the long term.”

He therefore advised member counties to comply with the World Health Organization, WHO, recommendation on breastfeeding up to the age of 6 months, which is one of the most effective ways of preserving health and ensuring child survival.

The Director, Health, Planning, Research and Statistics (HPRS) Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Dr. Chris Osa Isokpunwa, who is also the Chairman, Health Experts Committee reiterated Nigeria’s commitment to ensuring equitable access to quality healthcare services across all communities.

Dr. Isokpunwa said, “Nigeria, as one of the largest and most populous countries in the region, offers unique perspectives and challenges in delivering healthcare services evident in the National Health Sector Renewal Investment Initiative which is designed to reduce physical and financial pains and produce health for all Nigerians.

According to him, there is need to address persistent health issues such as maternal and child health infectious diseases and the emerging threat of non-communicable diseases.

He noted that the National Health Insurance Scheme, being reorganized, is aimed at expanding coverage and reducing out-of-pocket expenses of healthcare.
He further called on countries to prioritize the health and well-being of every individual in our region.

“ Together, through collaboration, innovation and shared resources, we can overcome challenges, strengthen health systems and build a brighter, healthier future for all West Africans as well as chart the course for an innovative West Africa”, he stated.

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