The 36 states in Nigeria spent over 11 per cent of their budgets on healthcare in 2020, compared to an average of 8.26 per cent spent in 2019, a report has shown.
The report, titled: ‘The 2021 SBM Health Preparedness Index’ was published by the geopolitical and socioeconomic research firm, SBM Intelligence and was released at the weekend.
According to the report, the share of healthcare spending as a percentage of the overall budget grew due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The report stated, “All 36 states had to revise their budgets due to the impact of the pandemic on their revenues. However, health budgets were not affected by these cuts, for the most part.
“As a result, the share of healthcare spending as a percentage of the overall budget grew. Put together, the 36 states spent an average of 8.26 per cent of their budgets on healthcare in 2019, compared with over 11 per cent in 2020.”
Only 11 states allocated above 10 per cent on healthcare in 2019, but in 2020, that number rose to 20, the report revealed.
On health preparedness by states, the report showed that Lagos, Ondo, Cross River, Ogun and Kwara states emerged as the top five most prepared states in Nigeria, while the bottom five are Yobe, Kano, Zamfara, Jigawa and Kebbi.
In terms of improvement, Enugu and Plateau states moved up six places, while Rivers, Ekiti and Kaduna moved up four places each, says the report, as Imo State sank 13 places to 21st, while Zamfara went down 10 places to 34th. Adamawa and Taraba regressed by five and four places respectively.
It noted that, “improved healthcare outcomes demand consistent investment over time while paying close attention to the doctor to population ratio.”