Nigeria with its 212 million population, is currently short on doctors, at a rate of 0.38 doctors per 1000. Not to mention many more other issues such as the previous deadly Ebola virus, high maternal death, and the currently on-going pandemic Covid-19. All these have severely impacted the Nigerian healthcare system. The SDG-3 implemented in Nigeria is supposed to provide Nigerians with enough doctors, improve their quality of life.
The Federal Government of Nigeria developed the Second National Strategic Health Development Plan (NSHDP II) 2018-2022 in order to address all the health care related issues. This was also developed in order to achieve the SDG 3.
Maternal Mortality Ratio. Small progress was made as the maternal deaths per 100000, stands at 576 deaths in 2016, had dropped down to 512 deaths in 2018. If this rate is retained, it is believed that Nigeria will be able to achieve its target of 288 maternal deaths by 2022 as reported in The Second National Strategic Health Development Plan (NSHDP II) 2018-2022 and possibly surpass it.
Under-five mortality rate (per 1000 live births). Many under-five mortality, were contributed by deadly diseases, such as malaria, pneumonia, diarrhoea, and other preventable infectious diseases (Olalubi & Bello 2020). The slight increase in the rate of immunization of children under five, from 21 per cent in between 2017 and 2017, to 25 per cent in 2018, unfortunately were unable to keep up with the slowly increasing under-five mortality rate. From 128 deaths in 2016, to 132 deaths in 2018.
Investment in health sector is severely low. Doctors are not paid enough for their talent hence why many of them chose to work outside Nigeria where they would be appropriately paid by the governments. Not only that administration side of things are very poor, patients’ data and record are not kept properly too, and this makes it very hard for doctors as they do not have enough data to refer to. The answers to why some could not benefit from free health care services lie in the fact that 77% of health care spending in Nigeria is out-of-pocket, coupled with poverty in Nigeria. Therefore, most Nigerians are unable to afford any health insurance, giving them little to no access to good health care.
The already weak and fragile healthcare system in Nigeria is also badly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. To combat the spread of the virus, some hospitals have to shut down, and this is disrupting pregnant mothers from receiving their routine check-ups. This could contribute to the already high number of maternal and neonatal deaths.
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