Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has said his government has in the last seven and half years focused on revamping and upgrading the state’s health sector, decentralizing the system and bringing quality and effective healthcare services closer to the people.

Obaseki said this when he inspected the progress of work at the ongoing reconstruction of Aruogba Primary Healthcare Centre (PHC) in Oredo Local Government Area of the state.

Noting that the government has refurbished over 40 PHCs and is building over 100 others across the state, the governor said part of his administration’s health improvement plan was first to build neighbourhood clinics of high standards that will help patients get quality health care regardless of their location in the state.

He said, “About seven years ago when we started our health improvement plan, we did say that the goal was to make sure that every citizen in Edo State does not drive a certain distance to seek healthcare. One of the major plans at that time was to focus on what you call Primary Healthcare Centers, that is neighborhood clinics, making sure you build infrastructure where people can easily go to get first-line health care.

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“The plan is to build 100 of these facilities across the State. We have many of these existing in one form or the other. The plan is to continue to upgrade and improve them. The key to this is not the quality of the building but the quality of the people to manage it.

“This has led to our investment in our healthcare institutions like the School of Nursing and the School of Health Technology. These schools will provide the manpower required to man these facilities across the State.”

Obaseki further noted, “The important thing is to decentralize the healthcare system, no more central hospital as every ward and populated neighborhood must have a neighborhood clinic which is called the primary health center with all the basic facilities as seen here.

“The Aruogba Primary Healthcare Center has a 14-bed facility-seven for males and seven for females, theater, and accommodation for doctors, among others.”
“We are trying to build about 100 of these and today, we have refurbished about 40 and have 60 more to go.”