Kwara state has ranked as the state with the lowest newborns and under-five mortality rate in the country according to a study by the Nigeria Governor’s Forum (NGF).
This was disclosed in the NGF’s monthly publication; ‘The Executive Summary’, July 2017 edition titled “Roadmap to Achieving Universal Health Coverage at the Subnational level”.
In Kwara, the Under five Mortality per Thousand Live Births (MICS 2016/2017) is put at 45.
According to the report, Ebonyi, Rivers, Anambra, Cross River, Lagos and Kwara states are below the benchmark of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of newborns and under-five mortality out of which Kwara has the lowest rate.
The survey of the 36 states used as indices the state social health insurance bill passed into law and been launched, enrollment into State Health Insurance scheme, development of affordable minimum service package (a- MSP), establishment of drugs management agency for the sustainable drugs supply scheme and the development of framework and process to report, review and response to all maternal and child deaths.
NGF at its meeting in January 2018, ratified promotion of accelerated implementation of Universal Health Coverage (UHC), commitment to Polio Eradication Initiative including strengthening Routine Immunization and addressing the problem of malnutrition, particularly stunting amongst under five children as the priority health interventions for 2018.
The actualization of all the indices adjudged Kwara as the state with the lowest under-five mortality rate.
Responding to the report, Kwara State Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed described NGFs’ ranking of the state as the lowest in the country with newborns and under-five mortality rate as an affirmation of his administration’s commitment to providing accessible and affordable healthcare to all.
He reiterated his commitment to promoting Universal Health Coverage (UHC) as evidenced in the recently launched Kwara State Health Insurance Scheme (KHIS) which provides subsidized healthcare as well as rehabilitation of health infrastructure across the state. He said the state government will continue to implement policies aimed at expanding access to quality healthcare and eliminating infant mortality, such its current policy of free healthcare for pregnant women and under-5s.