BY ISAIAH BENJAMIN, Kaduna
Kaduna State Government said necessary measures to regulate Patent and Proprietary Medicines Vendors (PPMVs) and Community Pharmacists, (CPs), against the control and use of substandard drugs are at advance stages.
The State Commissioner of Health and Human Services, Dr. Paul Manya Dogo, disclosed this when he received a team of Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria-Partnership for Advocacy in Child and Family Health; PSN-PACFaH Project who paid him an advocacy visit.
The Commissioner who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mohammed Mahmud Shuaibu, said this became necessary because the CPs and PPMVs are the major providers of Family Planning commodities and other primary healthcare services to the people particularly in rural areas.
He further disclosed that the State Government has already set up a committee to look into the matter and the committee upon completion of their assignment will submit its report to the Governor of the State, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai who will finally give out the blueprint on what the Agency will look like.
Speaking on PACFaH activities in the State, Dr. Dogo said Kaduna State has a long lasting relationship with PACFaH starting from nutrition, tackling the problem of Pneumonia and Diarrhea and now the organization is moving into Family Planning.
He assured the team that the State Government will work in collaboration with PACFaH to ensure that the benefits of the project get to the people of the state.
In his remarks and presentation, Acting Program Director Strategy PSN-PACFaH, Dr. David Akpotor said the PSN-PACFaH is the implementing Civil Society Organization (CSO) under the “Partnership for Advocacy in Child and Family Health,” focusing on reducing the under-5 mortality rate and improving health outcomes for Childhood Pneumonia and Diarrhea in Nigeria (with the use of Amoxicillin dispersible tablet and Zinc/LO-ORS co-pack as first-line treatment respectively).
He further said PSN is also the PACFaH health budget advocacy lead Partner. The health budget advocacy is to encourage the Government to increase funding to the health sector.
Dr. Akpotor disclosed that PACFaH is also launching a programme on expanding access to family planning and other primary health care services through Community Pharmacists/Patent and Proprietary Medicines Vendors.
He said the pilot focal States are Kaduna, Kano and Lagos States; adding that PSN is also advocating for the expansion of the Contraceptive Mix (Family Planning) services delivered by Community Pharmacists (CPs) and Patent and Proprietary Medicines Vendors (PPMVs) in Nigeria.
He emphasised that Nigeria contributes 15 percent of global maternal deaths, with about 111 women and girls dying every day due to preventable pregnancies and Child birth related complications.
According to Melinda Gates, he said, “No country in the last 50 years has emerged from poverty without expanding access to Contraceptives.
“This is unacceptable and preventable Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) is largely due to high unintended pregnancies, socio-economic factors and low use of modern contraceptives.
“The health and well-being of Women and Children are paramount to the economic stability and progress of any nation,” he said.
He assured the readiness of PCN-PACFAH towards partnering the state towards addressing child killer disease and maternal mortality rate in the state.