Lagos State 2017 Budget: Impact On The Health Sector

Mixed reactions have trailed the announcement of the 2017 Lagos State budget and how it would impact on the health sector? Have you heard about that the drastic reductions in the money allocated to the sector under the 2017 Lagos state budget? And how the stakeholders in the sector feared that such achievements recorded so far in the Lagos health sector would be lost?

However, the 2017 Lagos state budget tagged “The Golden Jubilee Budget” has really attracted a lot of praises, and as well lots of condemnation…

Although, the budget was increased by a whooping N150 billion from the 2016 budget, making it to be the biggest and largest budget ever made by any state of the federation, it has reduced its allocation to the health sector.

Nevertheless, the state government has promised to completely implement the Medical Health Insurance Scheme and deploy e-health/e-Insurance Health Service solutions, and also finish the on-going upgrading and extension work in the State General Hospitals and Ayinke House in Ikeja, as most stakeholders still believe that the decrement will trigger more harm than good.

Chief Olawale Jimoh, the Project Manager of Community Health Information Education Forum said that the reduction in the budget could alter the achievements that Lagos State has recorded thus far as there might not be enough fund on ground to sustain all of them.

Jimoh further stated that the stakeholders in the health sector would have little or no money to work in tackling the issues facing the Lagos state health sector.

He stated that what will the sector work with in terms of funds to execute plans in tackling issues like maternal and newborn health in the state? The sector really needs funds to execute planned and proposed activities.

Jimoh said that so many Primary Healthcare in Lagos State requires renovation, as the state government really need to equip some of the PHCs, and recruitment of adequate staffs.

However, a member of the Lagos State Civil Society Partnership, Barr. Ayo Adebusoye, expressing dissatisfaction, said, “This shows that health is not being prioritised in the state especially when you contrast this with a less financially endowed state like Bauchi State which is allocated a whopping 16 per cent of its entire 2017 budget to the health sector.

Adebusoye urged Governor Ambode to fully implement the community health insurance scheme, which he already said would start in the first quarter of this year in order to solve the issues of high medical bills, since most Lagosians pay out of their pocket for health.