Improving cancer care management in Nigeria

February 4th is commemorated globally as ‘World Cancer Day’, with the primary goal of significantly reducing cancer-related illness and death by 2020, by advocating for the adoption of preventive measures, early detection, and the availability of effective treatment.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), cancer is the second leading cause of death globally, and responsible for 8.8 million deaths in 2015. Globally, nearly 1 in 6 deaths is due to cancer. The number of new cases is expected to rise by about 70% over the next 2 decades. Around one-third of deaths from cancer are due to leading behavioral and dietary risks: high body mass index (BMI), low fruit and vegetable intake, lack of physical activity, tobacco use, and excessive alcohol intake.

Inherited genetic mutations play a major role in about 5 to 10 percent of all cancers, research have shown. Researchers have associated mutations in specific genes with more than 50 hereditary cancer syndromes, which are disorders that may predispose individuals to developing certain cancers. In addition, cancer causing infections, such as hepatitis and human papilloma virus (HPV), are responsible for up to 25% of cancer cases in low- and middle-income countries.

 

https://nigeriancancerregistries.net/

Nigeria is currently witnessing an epidemiological transition stemming from rising prevalence of Non Communicable Diseases (NCDs) within the context of persistent communicable disease burden. Whilst health inequalities in cancer incidence exist in Sub-Saharan African countries, the most common types in Nigeria include cancer of the breast, cervix, prostate, colorectal, and liver cancer, research has shown.

While cancer is a major public health concern in the country, the economic impact of cancer is significant and increasing. Rising cases of cancers and the enormous cost of illness has huge negative economic implications for the Nigerian healthcare system and the society at large. With less than 5% of Nigerians currently covered by the country’s health insurance scheme (NHIS), increasing cancer prevalence has a potentially impoverishing effect, considering the high diagnostic and treatment costs, significant out-of-pocket payments and accompanied lost income, especially in advanced cases.
Added to this is a combination of risk factors such as exposure to environmental factors (like carbon-monoxide from automobiles and generating sets, tobacco use,) increasing urbanization and rising population, including changing lifestyle such as healthy diet, lack of physical activity and harmful alcohol usage.

Against the backdrop of high economic fluctuations, average income levels remain stagnated, yet cost of illness is rising; a recent market survey revealed average spend for minimally-invasive diagnostic services have gradually risen from N10, 000 (in 2014) to between N20, 000 to N25, 000 (in 2017) for a breast scan, and as much as N40, 000 or more for biopsy. This is aside other ancillary costs for radiotherapy, chemotherapy inducing drugs.


The burden of cancer in Nigeria is unknown largely due to lack of accurate statistics or under-reporting. This is not peculiar to Nigeria but most parts of Africa. Although available data are either population of hospital-based, it is perceived that cancer incidence is rising in Nigeria. Other reasons for under reporting include inadequate diagnostic facilities, limited access to care, inadequate technical manpower and infrastructure as well as quality of cancer data systems all contribute to inaccurate data on cancer burden.


Source – World Health Organization – Cancer Country Profiles, 2014.(Nigeria)

An interplay of intrinsic (individual) and extrinsic (environmental) factors modulating the incidence and prevalence of cancer in Nigeria, reflects the need for a collective action for reversing the trend of rising prevalence, and reducing the negative influence of cancer on individual lives, households, communities, and the larger society.
When identified early, cancer is more likely to respond to effective treatment and can result in a greater probability of surviving, less morbidity, and less expensive treatment. Significant improvements can be made in the lives of cancer patients by detecting cancer early and avoiding delays in care. Some of the most common cancer types, such as breast cancer, cervical cancer, oral cancer, and colorectal cancer have high cure rates when detected early and treated according to best practices.


There is already a compelling financial/ economic argument for investing in the prevention of cancer. The Return on Investment (ROI) in taking on proven strategies for cancer prevention, early detection and health systems strengthening cannot be overemphasized.
Building the economic case for investment in cancer can change mindsets and allow government to justify placing cancer prevention and control at the heart of the national health plan. Planning an integrated, evidence-based and cost effective interventions throughout the care continuum (research, prevention, early detection, treatment, and palliative care) is one of the most effective ways to address the problem and ease the discomfort caused to patients and their families.

A significant reduction of cancer prevalence will be enhanced by a government-led approach to adopting population-wide people-centered interventions which address risk factors, sustaining primary healthcare measures, prioritized packages of essential interventions, and ensuring availability of options for qualitative treatment and palliative care.

Increased awareness of cancer will no doubt lead to an increase in the number of new cases. On the other hand, training and re-training of health personnel concerned with Cancer diagnosis and management cannot be over-emphasized.
Whilst having a National Cancer Institute will inspire research and training in Cancer, there is the need to create innovative partnership to strengthen advocacy efforts. No doubt, the knowledge and spheres of influence of the private sector to increase investment in cancer prevention measures will go a long way to address inequities in access to quality affordable cancer treatment and care, and reduce premature deaths from the disease.
There are high expectations for the government’s Nigeria Cancer Control Plan in the areas of advocacy/awareness creation, cancer prevention, early detection/screening and cancer management.

ARC partners with GAVI to implement the GAVI STEP in Nigeria

Africa Resource Centre, Nigeria (ARC Nigeria) is partnering with Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) to implement the GAVI Strategic Training for Executive Programme (STEP) in Nigeria.
GAVI, is a public–private global health partnership committed to increasing access to immunization in poor countries. The STEP program is aimed at providing healthcare personnel with non-technical leadership training, skills and competencies that are engrained in private sector supply chain managers so immunization managers can effectively fulfil their roles.

Speaking at the kick-off event for the STEP program held in Abuja, the Senior Supply Chain Consultant/STEP Program Manager for GAVI – Magloire Achidi, explained that GAVI recognizes the critical importance of investing in skills development for global vaccine supply chain leaders. As a result, GAVI is partnering with UPS to provide health supply chain management professionals and decision makers in various countries across Africa with the core leadership and management skills at all levels of the health system to enable them overcome existing and emerging challenges.

 

Magloire Achidi, Senior Supply Chain Consultant/STEP Program Manager, GAVI engaging participants on the GAVI STEP training in Nigeria

“Strong leadership skills are recognized as one of the critical enablers required to drive improvement within a country’s immunization supply. GAVI’s goal is to make potent vaccines available to every child in every district. However, without strong management and well trained staff, weaknesses in the system go unaddressed, resulting in vaccine wastage” Mr. Achidi explained.

He continued by stating that “STEP provides a continuous learning experience, utilizing a blend of instructor-led classroom sessions and distance learning assignments. The program provides instruction in people management, problem solving, communication, project management and professional development competencies. The audience for the STEP program are higher-level managers that have oversight and direct impact on the supply chain.”
Lending her view, Azuka Okeke – Country Director for ARC Nigeria, noted that supply chain management requires dedicated and competent immunization supply chain leaders with adequate numbers of skilled, accountable, motivated at all levels of the health system hence the need for the GAVI STEP training in Nigeria. ARC Nigeria was founded by Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria (PHN) in partnership with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and will be supporting GAVI with the implementation of the STEP program in Nigeria.

Azuka Okeke, Country Director for ARC Nigeria explaining the need for strong supply chain managers, hence the need for the GAVI STEP training

Giving an overview of immunization supply chain in the country, Pharm. Ekpemauzor explained that despite the success of the routine immunization programme, the national vaccine supply chain is under major strain to effectively manage the surge of new vaccine introductions, population growth and increase in desired coverages.

She highlighted some of the achievements of the Department of Logistics and Health Commodities (DLHC) including the creation of the Vaccine Stock Performance Management (VSPM) dashboard in collaboration with development partners which collects data from 744 LGAs, 36 States +FCT, 6 zonal stores and the National Strategic Cold Store (NSCS). The weekly review of the VSPM dashboard has created visibility for the first time across the system, thus enabling management at NPHCDA and other stakeholders respond to the stock level reports at National, State and LGA levels.

According to her, there is the need to adapt new delivery strategies, or benefit from new technological advances in cold chain equipment to increase their efficiency and effectiveness in Nigeria.


Pharm Ekpemauzor sharing insights on the immunization supply chain in Nigeria

The kick-off event for GAVI STEP had in attendance Hajia Daradara, Acting Director, DLHC; Strategy, Policy & Decision makers; senior supply chain managers; immunization managers from National Primary Healthcare Development Agency and State National Primary Healthcare Development Agency drawn from 19 states.

Championing a Nigerian Integrated Coalition to improve RMNCAH+N and achieve SDG targets

Over the last two decades, the coverage of key Reproductive, Maternal, Neonatal, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCAH) interventions has stagnated at low levels, despite significant investments in the health system in Nigeria. The lack of progress on services such as family planning, antenatal care, and skilled birth attendance as well as limited coverage of important interventions is further aggravated by poor quality of care.

Whilst the United Nations Every Woman Every Child puts into action a roadmap aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for ending all preventable deaths and improving the health and well-being of women, children, and adolescents by 2030, there is limited coordination and alignment of programs and fragmentation of local action in Nigeria.

The Nigerian Integrated Coalition aspires to form a coordinated cross-sectoral partnership to co-develop a multi-sectoral package of interventions & catalyze progress in improving RMNCAH+N in Nigeria-Dr. Muntaqa Umar-Sadiq, CEO, Private Sector Health Alliance

Due to this, the Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria (PHN) convened the inaugural Nigerian Integrated Coalition for Improving RMNCAH (NICIR) workshop to build consensus around system gaps and identify opportunities for synergies/collaboration between public and private sector players.

Amongst other things, the coalition seeks to co-design a coherent country owned cross-sectoral intervention package that catalyzes transformative, sustainable solutions to improve RMNCAH+N outcomes and strengthens private sector engagement for health within the broader Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) framework.

Speaking at the event, Dr. Muntaqa Umar-Sadiq, CEO, PHN revealed that Nigeria has had systemic challenges in translating global strategies and plans into local country-led action driven by limited coordination and fragmentation of local action; little consensus around multi-sectoral package of interventions to rally partners and limited funding – with no sustainable financing framework to achieve projected targets.

Public & Private sector players documenting areas of overlap, alignment, opportunities for collaboration where stakeholders could make an impact in health care in Nigeria 

Dr. Muntaqa pointed out that there are unrealized synergies in mobilizing domestic resources and private sector capabilities to contribute towards the achievement of the Nigeria’s health priorities.

“It is on this premise that there is the need to understand public and private sector initiatives towards achievement of the SDGs with the aim of developing a multi-sectoral package of interventions to catalyze transformative solutions to reducing maternal mortality; and systemically advance improvements across the healthcare system building blocks. The need for collaboration with cross-sectoral partners is critical to ensure no woman dies giving life,” Dr. Muntaqa explained.

Dr Mary-Ann Etiebet, Executive Director, Merck for Mothers, which is a 10-year $500 million initiative, explained that while Nigeria has a thriving private sector with a growing economy, local businesses are interested and willing to be part of improving health outcomes but efforts are fragmented.

“The time is right to build momentum to strategically accelerate private sector participation for impact in Nigeria. Through this consultative process, the goal of developing a multi-sectoral package of interventions using the SDG framework that can be integrated into current stakeholders’ work and aligns with the national agenda has begun. Added to this is identifying key multi-sectoral stakeholders and their roles as champions to advance progress,” Dr. Etiebet added.

A stakeholder panel discussion created an avenue for shared learnings and presentation of diverse, but unique perspectives for improving RMNCAH service delivery and outcomes in Nigeria. Worthy of note is the inclusive problem-solving and idea formulation strengthened collaboration, which reflects the partnerships approach of the Nigeria Global Financing Facility (GFF) country platform formed to bring together national leadership, private sector, civil society and stakeholders in RMNCAH to help close the gap for RMNCAH+N.

Public & Private sector players documenting areas of overlap, alignment, opportunities for collaboration where stakeholders could make an impact in health care in Nigeria 

An overview of participants reveals a balanced mix of across key sectors/stakeholder groups
federal MDAs-Dr. John Ovuoroye, who represented the Honorable Minister for Health, Ministry of Health, NPHCDA, Office of SDGs, Ministerial Task Force on Maternal Mortality; Ministry of Education & Women Affairs, Dangote Foundation; Novartis; Coca-Cola; GSK; Procter & Gamble; Zenith Bank; Sterling Bank; Forte Oil; 9Mobile; Imo, Jigawa, Niger, Osun, Katsina, Kebbi, Kano, Sokoto, Yobe & Zamfara, as well as Technical Partners & Civil  Society Organizations-World Bank, JHPIEGO; Pathfinder International; R4D; Wellbeing Foundation & World Bank.

One year on, Nigeria on course towards polio eradication?

Since the detection of Wild Poliovirus (WPV) in Nigeria in 2016 for the first time in two years, Nigeria’s quest to be officially declared polio-free by the World Health Organisation (WHO) was truncated. Since the re-emergence of the polio virus in the country, Nigeria alongside Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Central African Republic have conducted several immunisation campaigns to halt the spread of the virus with focus on reaching every child with vaccines, and closing immunity gaps in populations that have previously been inaccessible.

Nigeria is one of only three countries in the world with ongoing wild poliovirus transmission, alongside Afghanistan and Pakistan no thanks to the circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) outbreaks. The last case was in Monguno Local Government Area (LGA), Borno state with onset of paralysis on 21st day of August 2016.

According to a report by Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), a public-private partnership led by national governments with partners to eradicate polio globally, the total number of Wild Poliovirus (WPV1) cases for 2016 remains four and no cases have been reported in 2017

“Nigeria continues to implement an emergency response to the detected WPV1 strain and circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2) strains affecting the country (last detected in 2016). Detection of polio cases in Nigeria underscores the risk posed by low-level undetected transmission and the urgent need to strengthen subnational surveillance. In Northeast Nigeria, an emergency response team continues to use the polio infrastructure to monitor the recent cholera outbreak. Women who are volunteer community mobilisers have been particularly crucial in the response, distributing posters and leading education sessions on the importance of basic hygiene to prevent the spread of bacteria,” the report revealed.

Nigeria may once again be taken off the list of polio-endemic countries and become certified polio free by WHO if it maintains a polio free status for 3 full years. So far, the Federal Government is working with religious, traditional and community leaders to dispel myths about vaccination of children. Cutting-edge technologies such as GPS satellite tracking is in use to obtain real-time contact tracing and daily mapping of identified chains of transmission.

Until poliovirus transmission is interrupted in Nigeria, Afghanistan and Pakistan, countries remain at risk of importation of polio, especially vulnerable countries with weak public health and immunization services and travel or trade links to endemic countries.

Polio is a crippling and potentially fatal infectious disease. Whilst polio can be prevented through immunization, it is critical for Nigeria to continue its effort to eradicate the disease for good.

A range of innovative strategies would be required to reach children in high-risk areas, including opportunistic campaigns that are run whenever security permits, market vaccination, cross-border points and outreach to nomads.

There is the need for Nigeria to strengthen its commitment to routine immunization programmes, continued vigilance on the part of surveillance and collaboration between government, partners, community leaders and health workers across the country. At the heart of this is the need for a  robust and resilient healthcare system.

A review of service delivery in Nigeria shows significant inequities in access to basic services with the poorest population quintiles and the rural dwellers significantly disadvantaged. Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria’s interventions deliberately target underserved segments such as the poor rural and urban communities, with a large concentration of the poor, hence addressing inequities in access to services in the country.

It will be recalled that World Polio Day was established by Rotary International over a decade ago to commemorate the birth of Jonas Salk, who led the first team to develop a vaccine against poliomyelitis. Use of this inactivated poliovirus vaccine and subsequent widespread use of the oral poliovirus, developed by Albert Sabin, led to the establishment of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) in 1988.

Promoting Hand Hygiene, Key in Achieving SDGs amidst Public Health Issues

The year, 2014 would not be forgotten in a hurry by Africans, including Nigerians, following the outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) which sent shock waves down the spines of everyone. It almost became a silent norm to avoid handshakes or stay away from people perceived to have symptoms such as fever, cough, etc. for fear of contacting the dreaded EVD. The imminent fear led campaigns from private and public institutions to promote the practice of hygiene.
Whilst personal hygiene was held in high esteem across the country, certain people capitalized on the health crisis to engage in the brisk business of hand sanitizers while the outbreak lasted. Two years since after the outbreak of EVD, the practice of promoting hand washing appears to have waned off. This practice has not only nosedived by the general population but also amongst healthcare providers.
The practice of hand washing is one of the most cost-effective investments in public health yet it is seldom practiced across all works of life despite its lifesaving potential. Given the impact of handwashing on health, nutrition, education, and equity, lack of investment in handwashing has important economic implications at the population level.
Research show that handwashing is particularly cost effective when compared to other interventions. For example, a $3.35 investment in handwashing promotion is estimated to deliver the same amount of health benefits as $11 investment in latrine construction, a $200 investment in household water supply, or an investment in immunizations, according to Global Handwashing Partnership, a coalition of international stakeholders who recognize hygiene as a pillar of international development and public health.
Although people wash their hands with water, very few wash their hands with soap at critical moments (for instance, after using the toilet, while cleaning a child, and before handling food). Although the lack of soap is not a significant barrier to handwashing at home, the use of soap is frequently for laundry, washing dishes and bathing is perceived as priority for soap use as opposed to handwashing.

The 2017 Global Handwashing Day theme “Our hands, our future!” reminds us that handwashing protects our own health, but also allows us to build our own futures, as well as those of our communities, and the world.

Because handwashing is an affordable, effective way to achieve these goals, by having the power to improve access to education for children, protect the health of patients and communities, and reduce inequities. It has an important role in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals—contributing to zero hunger, good health, quality education, reduced inequalities, and more.

Promoting the benefits and practice of handwashing with soap, as well as fostering access to and improving hygiene facilities, will help us work towards a future where that potential is realized. On the other hand, school programs can help establish lifelong healthy habits. Making toilets and handwashing stations available in schools is essential to ensure children’s access to school, especially for girls, and critical to students’ health and to reducing absenteeism.

ARC Nigeria broker States, Private sector Partnerships to strengthen vaccine cold chain infrastructure in Nigeria

Over the years, the state of Nigeria’s healthcare system has been characterized by sub-optimal maternal and child health (MCH) outcomes and poor quality of health services. Although the health system is laden with supply and demand side challenges, limited progress in health outcomes is primarily driven by the low coverage of key health interventions and limited availability of life saving commodities in service delivery points across the country.

As the Federal Government scales up access to underutilized and high-impact commodities, effective in-country supply chains has become an even more critical success factor in ensuring these commodities reach the women and children who need them most. There is however some concern, (given deficits in vital supply chain and management functions) that the public health supply chain system could impede efforts to improve coverage and improve health outcomes in Nigeria

 Pharm Azuka Okeke, Country Director, Africa Resource Centre (ARC) Nigeria

Despite marginal improvements and millions of dollars of supply chain investments by development partners and bilateral donors to address supply chain system challenges, Nigeria’s public health supply chain continues to be ineffective, inefficient, fragmented, and wasteful. Existing State and donor driven supply chain interventions are inadequate and necessitate bold, innovative approaches and complementary broad based partnerships to disrupt the cycle of poor public health supply chain performance.

To reverse this worrisome trend, Africa Resource Centre for Supply Chain in Nigeria (ARC Nigeria), an independent advisor and strategic partner founded by the Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) is brokering States and Private sector partnerships to strengthen vaccine cold chain infrastructure in Nigeria.

Speaking at the Knowledge Sharing and Hackathon Workshop on Supply Chain organized by ARC Nigeria, in partnership with National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) and Solina Group, which brought together over 80 Ministry of Health Directors and Immunization Managers from Borno, Sokoto, Osun, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara, Yobe and Niger states, Dr. Kayode Ogunniyi, Executive Secretary, Osun State Primary Healthcare Development Board, said that the survival of Nigeria as a nation depends on the quality of healthcare that is giving to children particularly the under-5 that constitute 20 percent of the total population.

According to Dr. Ogunniyi “Giving them the right vaccines at the right time is a strategy to secure their wellbeing. A robust knowledge of vaccine supply chain with a view to protecting vaccine integrity from the manufacturers to the administration to the child is a task that must be done. Thanks to National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), ARC Nigeria and Solina for this initiative.

Dr. Samuel Jiya, Program Manager, Immunisation Vaccine and Logistics, Niger State, revealed that the workshop has created a platform that will strengthen Public-Private Partnerships in the Immunisation and Vaccine space in Nigeria.

“It has facilitated direct engagement of players in the Private sector and public wing. Personally, for Niger State, we have outlined our challenges and proffer new innovations in tackling them. Kudos to ARC Nigeria. Keep it up,” Dr. Jiya stated.

Sharing private sector engagement experience in healthcare, Trip Allport, Project Last Mile Delivery Lead, BMGF, disclosed that the Project Last Mile (PLM), which is an initiative of BMGF in partnership with Coca cola is an example of how the private sector is engaging with the public sector to develop an innovative solution with the aim of providing access to essential medicines and medical supplies in African.

““Project Last Mile, in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is proud to support Nigeria in strengthening the vaccine cold chain, tapping into the capabilities of The Coca-Cola Company and its bottling partner, the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC)” Trip explained.

He continued: “By leveraging the local expertise and business partners of the Coca-Cola System in the country, we believe we can contribute to a marked improvement to maintaining a functional vaccine cold chain, meaning more children will have effective vaccines available at the point of care. Over the past couple of months, PLM has been developing the programme concept and framework with the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) at Federal level and plans to now pilot a new model of cold chain equipment maintenance at the State level with Lagos State in 2017/18, and if successful, will endeavor to expand this support to other states in Nigeria.”

L-R:  Mr. Lionel Pierre, Consultant to Project Last Mile, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation , Mr. Trip Allport, Project Last Mile Delivery Lead, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Mr. Rudi Lensley, CDE Director, Nigeria Bottling Company,

At the Supply Chain Workshop on Private-Public sector Collaboration organized by Africa Resource Centre for Supply Chain Nigeria in Kaduna for Ministry of Health Directors and Immunisation Managers in 10 states in Nigeria

The state of the health system in Nigeria is characterized by sub-optimal maternal and child health (MCH) outcomes, poor quality of health services, lack of protection from financial risk and a double burden of disease, with persistent vaccine preventable and communicable diseases and rising non communicable diseases. Although the health system is laden with supply and demand side challenges, the limited progress in health outcomes is primarily driven by the low coverage of key health interventions and limited availability of life saving commodities in service delivery points across the country.

Participants at the Knowledge Sharing and Hackathon Workshop in Kaduna

As the Government of Nigeria scales up access to underutilized and high-impact commodities, effective in-country supply chains become an even more critical success factor in ensuring these commodities reach the women and children who need them most. There is however some concern, (given deficits in vital supply chain and management functions) that the public health supply chain system could impede efforts to improve coverage and improve health outcomes in Nigeria

Despite some marginal improvements and millions of dollars of supply chain investments by USAID, Global Fund, GAVI, UNFPA, UNICEF, DFID, DFTAD, and other bilateral donors to address supply chain system challenges, Nigeria’s public health supply chain continues to be ineffective, inefficient, fragmented, and wasteful. Existing State and donor driven supply chain interventions are inadequate and necessitate bold innovative approaches and complementary broad based partnerships to disrupt the cycle of poor public health supply chain performance.

ARC Nigeria broker States, private sector partnerships to strengthen vaccine cold chain infrastructure in Nigeria

Ever since Edward Jenner demonstrated the value of immunization in 1792, vaccination has continued to remain a key strategy in the prevention and control of infectious diseases including preventable childhood diseases. Nigeria, with a population of over 170 million, has one of the highest under five mortality rates in the globe, with about 25% of these deaths preventable through routine immunization.

Despite marginal improvements and millions of dollars of supply chain investments by development partners and bilateral donors to address supply chain system challenges, Nigeria’s public health supply chain continues to be ineffective, inefficient, fragmented, and wasteful. Existing State and donor driven supply chain interventions are inadequate and necessitate bold innovative approaches and complementary broad based partnerships to disrupt the cycle of poor public health supply chain performance.

Whilst the Federal Government reinstates the need to provide immunization services and potent vaccines free to all population at risk as well as ensure equitable access, a 2016 NIC/MICS survey reveal the unavailability of vaccine stock across the states which has contributed to low immunization coverage. More worrisome is the fact that only 3 out of every 10 children are immunized in Nigeria while all Northern states in the country have immunization coverage below 50 percent.

A recent analysis show that weak cold chain infrastructure and inefficient vaccine distribution system is one of the 6 key immunization program challenges in Africa’s most populous nation.

To reverse this worrisome trend, Africa Resource Centre for Supply Chain in Nigeria (ARC Nigeria), an independent advisor and strategic partner founded by the Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) is brokering States and Private sector partnerships to strengthen vaccine cold chain infrastructure in Nigeria.

Speaking at the Knowledge Sharing and Hackathon Workshop on Supply Chain organized by ARC Nigeria which brought together Ministry of Health Directors and Immunization Managers from Borno, Sokoto, Osun, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara, Yobe and Niger states, Dr. Kayode Ogunniyi, Executive Secretary, Osun State Primary Healthcare Development Board, said that the survival of Nigeria as a nation depends on the quality of healthcare that is giving to children particularly the under-5 that constitute 20 percent of the total population.

According to Dr. Ogunniyi “Giving them the right vaccines at the right time is a strategy to secure their wellbeing. A robust knowledge of vaccine supply chain with a view to protecting vaccine integrity from the manufacturers to the administration to the child is a task that must be done. Thanks to National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), ARC Nigeria and Solina for this initiative.”
Dr. Samuel Jiya, Program Manager, Immunisation Vaccine and Logistics, Niger State, revealed that the workshop has created a platform that will strengthen Public-Private Partnerships in the Immunisation and Vaccine space in Nigeria.

“It has facilitated direct engagement of players in the Private sector and public wing. Personally, for Niger State, we have outlined our challenges and proffer new innovations in tackling them. Kudos to ARC Nigeria. Keep it up,” Dr. Jiya stated.

Sharing private sector engagement experience in healthcare, Trip Allport, Project Last Mile Delivery Lead, BMGF, disclosed that the Project Last Mile (PLM), in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is proud to support Nigeria in strengthening the vaccine cold chain, tapping into the capabilities of The Coca-Cola Company and its bottling partner, the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC).

“By leveraging the local expertise and business partners of the Coca-Cola System in the country, we believe we can contribute to a marked improvement to maintaining a functional vaccine cold chain, meaning more children will have effective vaccines available at the point of care,” he said.

Source : Daily Post

Vaccine Cold Chain Infrastructure: ARC Nigeria Woo States, Private Sector

In order to reverse the worrisome trend of the state of Nigeria’s healthcare system which has been characterized by sub-optimal maternal and child health (MCH) outcomes and poor quality of health services, Africa Resource Centre for Supply Chain in Nigeria (ARC Nigeria), an independent advisor and strategic partner founded by the Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) is brokering States and Private sector partnerships to strengthen vaccine cold chain infrastructure in Nigeria.

Speaking at the Knowledge Sharing and Hackathon Workshop on Supply Chain organized by ARC Nigeria, NPHCDA and Solina Group, which brought together over 80 Ministry of Health Directors and Immunization Managers from Borno, Sokoto, Osun, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara, Yobe and Niger states, Dr. Kayode Ogunniyi, Executive Secretary, Osun State Primary Healthcare Development Board, said that the survival of Nigeria as a nation depends on the quality of healthcare that is giving to children particularly the under-5 that constitute 20 percent of the total population.

According to Dr. Ogunniyi “Giving them the right vaccines at the right time is a strategy to secure their wellbeing. A robust knowledge of vaccine supply chain with a view to protecting vaccine integrity from the manufacturers to the administration to the child is a task that must be done. Thanks to National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), ARC Nigeria and Solina for this initiative.

Dr. Samuel Jiya, Program Manager, Immunisation Vaccine and Logistics, Niger State, revealed that the workshop has created a platform that will strengthen Public-Private Partnerships in the Immunisation and Vaccine space in Nigeria.

“It has facilitated direct engagement of players in the Private sector and public wing. Personally, for Niger State, we have outlined our challenges and proffer new innovations in tackling them. Kudos to ARC Nigeria. Keep it up,” Dr. Jiya stated.

Sharing private sector engagement experience in healthcare, Trip Allport, Project Last Mile Delivery Lead, BMGF, disclosed that the Project Last Mile (PLM), which is an initiative of BMGF in partnership with Coca cola is an example of how the private sector is engaging with the public sector to develop an innovative solution with the aim of providing access to essential medicines and medical supplies in African.

“Project Last Mile, in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is proud to support Nigeria in strengthening the vaccine cold chain, tapping into the capabilities of The Coca-Cola Company and its bottling partner, the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC). By leveraging the local expertise and business partners of the Coca-Cola System in the country, we believe we can contribute to a marked improvement to maintaining a functional vaccine cold chain, meaning more children will have effective vaccines available at the point of care. Over the past couple of months, PLM has been developing the programme concept and framework with the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) at Federal level and plans to now pilot a new model of cold chain equipment maintenance at the State level with Lagos State in 2017/18, and if successful, will endeavor to expand this support to other states in Nigeria.

Source : Leadership

ARC Nigeria broker states, private sector partnership to strengthen vaccine infrastructure

The Africa Resource Centre for Supply Chain in Nigeria (ARC Nigeria), an independent advisor and strategic partner, founded by Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is brokering states and private sector partnerships in strengthening the country’s vaccine cold chain infrastructure.

This is coming on the need to reverse the sub-optimal maternal and child health (MCH) outcomes and poor health service delivery in the country, according to a press statement made available to BusinessDay.

Speaking at the knowledge sharing and Hackathon Workshop on supply chain organized by ARC Nigeria, NPHCDA and Solina Group, Kayode Ogunniyi, executive secretary, Osun State Primary Healthcare Development Board, said that the survival of Nigeria as a nation depends on the quality of healthcare that is giving to children particularly the under-5 that constitute 20 percent of the total population.

“Giving them the right vaccines at the right time is a strategy to secure their wellbeing. A robust knowledge of vaccine supply chain with a view to protecting vaccine integrity from the manufacturers to the administration to the child is a task that must be done. Thanks to National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), ARC Nigeria and Solina for this initiative,” Ogunniyi said.

According to experts, despite the marginal improvements and millions of dollars of supply chain investments by development partners and bilateral donors to address supply chain system challenges, Nigeria’s public health supply chain has continues to be ineffective, inefficient, fragmented, and wasteful.

The experts stated that the deficits in vital supply chain and management functions in the country’s public health supply could impede the government efforts to improve coverage and health outcomes in Nigeria.

Samuel Jiya, program manager, Immunisation Vaccine and Logistics, Niger State, revealed that the workshop has created a platform that will strengthen Public-Private Partnerships in the immunisation and vaccination space in the country.

“It has facilitated direct engagement of players in the private sector and public wing. Personally, for Niger State, we have outlined our challenges and proffer new innovations in tackling them,” Jiya said.

Sharing private sector engagement experience in healthcare, Trip Allport, Project Last Mile Delivery Lead, BMGF, disclosed that his organisation which is an initiative of BMGF in partnership with Coca cola is an example of how the private sector is engaging with the public sector to develop an innovative solution with the aim of providing access to essential medicines and medical supplies in African.

““PLMD in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is proud to support Nigeria in strengthening the vaccine cold chain, tapping into the capabilities of The Coca-Cola Company.

“By leveraging the local expertise and business partners of the Coca-Cola System in the country, we believe we can contribute to a marked improvement to maintaining a functional vaccine cold chain, meaning more children will have effective vaccines available at the point of care.

“Over the past couple of months, PLM has been developing the programme concept and framework with the NPHCDA at Federal level and plans to now pilot a new model of cold chain equipment maintenance at the State level with Lagos State in 2017/18, and if successful, will endeavor to expand this support to other states in Nigeria,” he said.

Source : Business Day

Vaccine Cold Chain Infrastructure: ARC Nigeria Woo States, Private Sector

In order to reverse the worrisome trend of the state of Nigeria’s healthcare system which has been characterized by sub-optimal maternal and child health (MCH) outcomes and poor quality of health services, Africa Resource Centre for Supply Chain in Nigeria (ARC Nigeria), an independent advisor and strategic partner founded by the Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) is brokering States and Private sector partnerships to strengthen vaccine cold chain infrastructure in Nigeria.

Speaking at the Knowledge Sharing and Hackathon Workshop on Supply Chain organized by ARC Nigeria, NPHCDA and Solina Group, which brought together over 80 Ministry of Health Directors and Immunization Managers from Borno, Sokoto, Osun, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara, Yobe and Niger states, Dr. Kayode Ogunniyi, Executive Secretary, Osun State Primary Healthcare Development Board, said that the survival of Nigeria as a nation depends on the quality of healthcare that is giving to children particularly the under-5 that constitute 20 percent of the total population.
According to Dr. Ogunniyi “Giving them the right vaccines at the right time is a strategy to secure their wellbeing. A robust knowledge of vaccine supply chain with a view to protecting vaccine integrity from the manufacturers to the administration to the child is a task that must be done. Thanks to National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), ARC Nigeria and Solina for this initiative.
Dr. Samuel Jiya, Program Manager, Immunisation Vaccine and Logistics, Niger State, revealed that the workshop has created a platform that will strengthen Public-Private Partnerships in the Immunisation and Vaccine space in Nigeria.
“It has facilitated direct engagement of players in the Private sector and public wing. Personally, for Niger State, we have outlined our challenges and proffer new innovations in tackling them. Kudos to ARC Nigeria. Keep it up,” Dr. Jiya stated.
Sharing private sector engagement experience in healthcare, Trip Allport, Project Last Mile Delivery Lead, BMGF, disclosed that the Project Last Mile (PLM), which is an initiative of BMGF in partnership with Coca cola is an example of how the private sector is engaging with the public sector to develop an innovative solution with the aim of providing access to essential medicines and medical supplies in African.

“Project Last Mile, in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is proud to support Nigeria in strengthening the vaccine cold chain, tapping into the capabilities of The Coca-Cola Company and its bottling partner, the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC). By leveraging the local expertise and business partners of the Coca-Cola System in the country, we believe we can contribute to a marked improvement to maintaining a functional vaccine cold chain, meaning more children will have effective vaccines available at the point of care. Over the past couple of months, PLM has been developing the programme concept and framework with the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) at Federal level and plans to now pilot a new model of cold chain equipment maintenance at the State level with Lagos State in 2017/18, and if successful, will endeavor to expand this support to other states in Nigeria.

 

Source: NIGERIA TODAY