An estimated 5,000 population lack access to healthcare in Niger

An estimated 5,000 population lack access to healthcare in Niger

An estimated 5,000 populations in the Zumba community, Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger State lack access to good healthcare delivery. A predominantly situation arising as a result of deplorable Primary Healthcare Centre in the area.

Zumba community with an estimated 4,000 populated is located 47 kilometres away from Minna, the Niger State capital, and 122 kilometres away from Abuja, Nigeria’s capital city.

On a visit to the community hospital, one sees a deplorable building that can be best described as an ancient abandoned museum serving as a hospital with only one healthcare worker seen attending to patients.

Zumba Community residents recounting their experiences over the deplorable healthcare say they rely on the hospital for immunization and ante-natal care.

MAWA Foundation learned from the community residents that some who can afford alternative healthcare have since abandoned primary Healthcare for a private hospital where they receive better healthcare.

Worse still, a good number of the community inhabitants rely on herbs for medical care. A situation MAWA learned is a result of the availability of quality healthcare delivery in the area. While the use of herbs is cultural for some people.

The Zumba community Primary Healthcare Centre has continued to be this deplorable even as the Niger state government in 2022 alone approved N5.454 billion for community healthcare delivery.

The money that was approved using the state Primary Health Care Development Agency is meant to improve healthcare delivery in communities in the state.

Out of N5.454 billion approved for the Primary Health Care Development Agency, N4.923 billion was set aside for capital projects. While the state ministry of health got N21.828 billion approved for it in the 2021 budget.

It is unclear how the Niger State Primary Health Care Development Agency, got such a huge allocation, and the Zumba community hospital is this deplorable.

Also, read, Estimated 4,000 population denied healthcare in Niger State over collapsed hospital

Two years ago, a senior official from the Niger State Primary Health Care Development Agency who spoke to MAWA-Foundation but preferred his identity concealed because he is not the right person to speak on the issue, said he is aware not all approved budgets are released, but pointed out that even the released ones are often not properly utilized.

Zumba community is a common example in Nigeria where hospitals are allowed to rot. In contrast, the poor who cannot afford private healthcare delivery are allowed to die in a deplorable healthcare system.

MAWA-Foundation could not immediately reach out to the Niger State government for an official response.

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