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Mimiko At Chatham House, Advises FG To Prioritise Maternal Healthcare

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Olusegun Mimiko, the immediate past governor of Ondo State, has advised the Nigerian government to pay critical attention to the high rate of maternal mortality in the country.

Mimiko gave the advice while speaking with journalists, on Friday, September 22, 2017 at the Chatham House in London after delivering a paper on “Improving Access to Health Services for All” using his achievements in Ondo in maternal and child health as a case study.

The former governor, who is a leading advocate for universal healthcare in Africa, said funding will never be adequate in any human setting but with the right kind of leadership, the country can drastically reduce maternal mortality, which is about 19 percent of global maternal deaths according to the World Bank.

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“We must call a major stakeholders’ meeting where there will be an agreement on a universal health package that every state in the country can afford, and create an eligibility criteria for those who build on it so that they can be rewarded accordingly and eventually we will get there. As we do this, we prioritize safe motherhood and child health” Dr. Mimiko said.

Mimiko also took time to demonstrate how his administration as governor of Ondo state midwived a functional and effective healthcare delivery system, which attracted local and international recognitions as a proven method of reducing maternal mortality particularly with the introduction of his homegrown initiatives such as Abiye (Safe motherhood) program, Agbebiye and Orirewa that crashed the maternal mortality indices in the state.

The former governor charged Nigerian leaders at every level not to see only physical structures as achievement saying that quality healthcare for women is a great empowerment tool.

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“Safe motherhood is a gender parity tool, every woman wants good life. They will be empowered if they can have access to quality health without catastrophic spending. What will eventually drive universal health coverage in Africa is the political will and that is what will generate passion and it the passion that will attract donors from around the world,” Mimiko stated.

Also present at the event were Isaac Adewole, Nigeria’s health minister along with other stakeholders in the health sector from Nigeria and Africa who came to discuss how to optimize global opportunities in achieving Universal Health Coverage and Health Security in Nigeria.

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