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Enhancing Primary Healthcare: Stakeholders Call for Community Collaboration

Awka, Anambra State – A joint media briefing and meeting of key health organizations emphasized the crucial need for collaborative efforts in improving primary healthcare services in the state. The event, held in Awka, brought together the Association of Civil Society in Malaria Control, Immunization, and Nutrition (ACOMIN), Tuberculosis Network, and the Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS (NEPWHAN) network on COVID-19 Response, Resilient, and Sustainable System for Health.

Funded by a grant from the Global Fund through the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) in Nigeria, the COVID-19 Response Mechanism, Resilient, and Sustainable System for Health project aims to strengthen healthcare systems in health centers for disease prevention and treatment within communities.

A community-led monitoring initiative is currently underway in five local government areas – Aguata, Awka South, Anambra East, Dunkofia, and Nnewi South. Notable achievements have been made through community engagements, identifying gaps, and collaborating with stakeholders for donations and support.

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During the event, Mrs. Chioma Okeke, the Anambra State Coordinator of ACOMIN, highlighted the association’s successes and urged government officials and policymakers to prioritize and increase funding for primary healthcare centers. Additionally, she emphasized the importance of enhancing the healthcare workforce’s capacity and ensuring that essential services are accessible at all times.

Community involvement was recognized as a critical factor in sustaining and enhancing the effectiveness of primary healthcare centers. Participants encouraged community members to actively support and advocate for their local health centers through volunteering, donating resources, and participating in advocacy efforts to secure increased funding and resources.

Mr. Wisdom Joseph, the State Programme Officer of the association, stressed the significance of community ownership in achieving optimal results and highlighted the media’s role in informing communities about their responsibilities in primary healthcare service delivery.

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Mrs. Ifeyinwa Unachukwu, the Anambra State Coordinator for Civil Society on Tuberculosis Network, emphasized the organization’s mechanisms for reaching out to the State government, urging Ndi Anambra and other relevant stakeholders to support the project, especially for the benefit of those living in rural areas.

Pharmacist Chisom Uchem, representing the Executive Secretary of the Anambra State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, commended the association’s efforts and assured the continuation of a cordial relationship between the agency and the association.

The event, which concluded with a question and answer session, underscored the importance of collective action and community collaboration in advancing primary healthcare services in Anambra State.

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