In his determination to reposition the health sector in the State, Gombe state Governor, Alhaji Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya has approved the release of N605 million to the State Primary Health Care Development Agency to enable it scale up the implementation of the Nigeria State Health Investment Project (NSHIP) to the 5 remaining Local Government Areas of the State, namely: Kaltungo, Nafada, Shongom, Funakaye and Kwami.
NSHIP is a World Bank project currently being implemented in 8 states of Nigeria. In Gombe State, the project is currently being implemented in 6 out of the 11 Local Government Areas, including Akko, Billiri, Gombe, Yamaltu Deba, Balanga and Dukku, where 85 Primary Healthcare centres have been successfully revitalized. By the design of the project, Gombe State is expected to cover only 50% of the state with the World Bank credit earmarked for the project.
The approval of this counterpart funding for NSHIP is an unprecedented move, where a state is using domestic resources to fund a Performance Based Financing (PBF) programme.
Governor Inuwa Yahaya had earlier during a meeting with a World Bank delegation jointly led by task team leaders, Mr. Gyuri Fritche and Fatima Abubakar Mustapha, pushed for the scaling up of the project to the remaining 5 LGA’s so that the entire populace will enjoy the benefit therein, following which the two parties agreed to escalade it on a 40%/ 60% basis with Gombe providing N605 Million while the World Bank provides the balance of 1.5m dollars from the International Development Association, IDA resources for the NSHIP project allocated to the state.
The Nigeria PBF programme started in 2011 with 3 States of Adamawa, Ondo and Nasarawa. It was scaled up in 2015 to all the remaining 5 States of North East following the Boko Haram insurgency in the region.
By the design of the additional Financing for the project, the states of Bauchi, Gombe and Taraba are to cover only 50% of their LGA’s while Borno and Yobe cover 100% of their’s.
The successful implementation of the project in the focal states has demonstated that the PBF reforms produce encouraging results, thereby becoming the preferred approach to achieve Universal Health Coverage.