Akpabio to Sign HIV/AIDS Control Agency Bill into Law
01 Aug 2012
Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State will soon sign into law the bill establishing the State HIV/AIDS Control Agency. The State Deputy Governor, Mr. Nsima Ekere, who announced this at the annual general meeting and scientific conference of the Akwa Ibom State branch of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), said the Governor will not only sign the bill, which was recently passed by the State House of Assembly, into law but will ensure that the agency is well-funded to enable it meet its obligations.
The Akwa Ibom State (NMA), is holding her annual general meeting and scientific conference between 27th July and 5th Agust 2012 with the theme "Health Care Financing In Nigeria" and sub teams of "Millenium Development Goals in Nigeria, The Journey So Far" and "National Health Insurance Scheme In Nigeria The Need For Akwa Ibom State Government To Key In"
Mr. Ekere, who represented Governor Godswill Akpabio at the occasion, called for concerted efforts in the fight against HIV/AIDS particularly in the mother-to-child transmission of the pandemic. He urged the NMA in the state to monitor developments in the renewed international research for a cure for HIV/AIDS to ensure that Akwa Ibom people will be among the first to benefit from a potential cure.
The Deputy Governor said the Government has put together strong policies and programmes to strengthen the healthcare sector including the free medical treatment for pregnant women, children below the age of five and the aged as well as the massive rehabilitation of health institutions across the state in addition to the building of five new cottage hospitals.
He said the Government has also intervened in the University of Uyo Teaching Hospital by providing facilities including a pediatric ward and provided all medical doctors within its employ vehicles to enhance their mobility in addition to sound remuneration and training opportunities for them abroad.
Mr. Ekere promised that the Government will equip and staff the 20th Anniversary Specialist Hospital with the best equipment and personnel to make it the best in the country and stop medical tourism of Nigerians abroad. He lauded the aesthetic state of the NMA state secretariat and directed the State Commissioner for Rural Development to immediately take steps to connect the secretariat to the national grid.
The State Commissiner for Health, Dr. Bassey Antai, said the State Government will continue to make healthcare accessible and affordable to all in the state. He urged all doctors to join hands in the fight to reduce the HIV/AIDS prevalence in the state.
The State Chairman of the NMA, Dr. Etiobong Etukumana, thanked the Governor for the massive transformation of the health sector and the infrastructural development of the state.
The immediate past State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Francis Udoikpong, who chaired the occasion, described the health sector as the heart beat of the uncommon transformation of the Akpabio Administration, expressing delight that the administration has transformed the sector.