Invoice Gates says Nigeria doesn’t have to spend an excessive amount of on buying COVID-19 vaccines however ought to reasonably focus extra on revitalizing the weak and underfunded well being sector particularly the first well being care facilities.
Gates mentioned this whereas responding to a query posed by The PUNCH throughout an interview with choose African journalists on Tuesday.
The Minister of Well being, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, had in December knowledgeable the Senate that Nigeria would require over N400bn to vaccinate 70 per cent of Nigeria’s inhabitants at $8 per vaccine.
When requested if it was applicable for Nigeria to spend such an enormous sum of cash on vaccine acquisition within the midst of different points plaguing the well being sector, Gates mentioned;
“There is no such thing as a doubt that the affect of placing cash into the well being system significantly the first healthcare system will likely be very excessive when it comes to saving kids’s lives and you might be completely proper. Nigeria shouldn’t divert the very restricted cash that it has for well being into attempting to pay a excessive value for COVID vaccines.”
Gates mentioned Nigeria might additionally rely largely on teams like GAVI the Vaccine Alliance for COVID-19 vaccines.
He argued that investing within the major well being system would enhance protection and construct Nigeria’s response in tackling different illnesses.
“The important thing factor could be, Nigeria continues to be GAVI eligible and so for lots of these vaccines, they may come by means of this GAVI facility that we increase cash for and well being in Nigeria is mostly underfunded.”
“If you happen to have a look at the first well being centres within the North, particularly for those who have a look at the vaccine protection charges, there are actually thousands and thousands of lives that may be saved if the first well being system operates at a stage that another nations on the similar wealth of Nigeria if the system was this good.”
“So, I’m an advocate for the federal government to have extra assets and prioritize well being. Clearly, I’m not a voter in Nigeria so Nigeria can determine that independently. My recommendation is (that) the first well being care system is what’s tremendous vital.” He added.