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Nigeria: Nigeria Health Profile


Nigeria Health


Most of the health and developmental challenges in Nigeria over the period of the first Country Cooperation Strategy (2002-2007) have not changed significantly. Nigeria is on track toward achieving, in part or in whole, only three out of the eight MDGs, namely, basic education, HIV prevalence and the global partnership for development.

The Government has, with its development partners initiated processes to address this. A number of interventions such as Reaching Every Ward (REW), Integrated Management of Childhood Illness (IMCI) Strategy, and lately Integrated Maternal Neonatal and Child Health (IMNCH) strategy have been implemented as a drive towards the achievement of the goals.

Government has developed guidelines for the intensification of Integrated Diseases Surveillance and Response (IDSR). Five epidemic prone diseases (cholera, cerebrospinal meningitis (CSM), measles, Lassa fever and yellow fever) are now being reported weekly. Twenty three diseases are now on a list of notifiable diseases. Completeness, timeliness and quality still remain challenges. Progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in Nigeria Health funding in Nigeria relies on a mixture of government budget, health insurance (social and private), external funding and private out-of-pocket spending. The level of spending on health is relatively low at less than 5% of gross domestic product (GDP). Household out-of-pocket expenditure as a proportion of total health expenditure averaged 64.5% between 1998 and 2002, which is very high. It is estimated that on average healthcare consumes more than half of total household expenditure in about 4% of cases and over a quarter in 12%.


• Strong government ownership of the health reform agenda and formal commitment to strengthen the health systems using Primary Health Care;
• Nigeria has signed onto the International Health Partnerships (IHP+) Global Compact and is in the process
of developing a national strategic health and investment plan;
• The strong focus on the President’s 7 point agenda for health development;
• The Country Strategy contributes to the Nigeria UNDAF2 2009-2012 that articulates the commitment of UN Country Team to supporting the efforts of the government of Nigeria toward attaining the goals contained in the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS2) 2008 – 2011 and
provides the framework for the harmonization of the work of UN agencies in the country.


• Low population coverage with unequal access to adequate health services, clean water and sanitation;
• Strengthening the LGAs and the Ward Health Systems to deliver comprehensive primary health care;
• Inadequate health information systems for monitoring and analysis of health indicators;
• Human Resource capacity development throughout the health sector. Need for intensive recruitment of national staff to fill of the established posts at the periphery;
• Channeling the available substantive internal resources to deliver essential services and available technologies.