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Category: Nigeria

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Community Health WorkersNigeria

Health in Nigeria and the Role of the Community Health Worker

Cost Effective Interventions Can Improve Health

Health in Nigeria has been steadily improving throughout the years. However, despite these improvements, the average life expectancy for Nigerians is still below the global average. The major causes of mortality and morbidity among Nigerians (neonatal disorders, diarrheal diseases, malaria, lower respiratory infections, congenital birth defects, and HIV/AIDS) have proven to be preventable through simple and cost-effective interventions. However, gaining access to these interventions can prove difficult for many Nigerians. There are too few medical personnel to cover the rapidly growing population, with only 3.8 doctors per 10,000 people. Furthermore, of the 3,543 healthcare centers in the country, only 950 are public infrastructures. Private healthcare, while of high quality, comes at a cost that most Nigerians simply cannot afford.

 

How to Bridge the Gap

This is where International H.E.L.P. comes in. By working alongside established local organizations to bring Community Health Worker Training programs to local communities, we hope to bridge this access gap so every Nigerian is able to receive quality care. Ideally, healthcare services should go directly to where they’re needed most: a door-to-door service. The Community Health Workers we train would be able to provide just this service. We also believe it is imperative to bring the voices of the community into our programs. They, as primary stakeholders, know best what is needed in their community and how to mobilize resources to bring about positive change for healthier communities. Only together can we build an impactful and sustainable program so families can live healthy lives.

 

– Kelda Lee, IHELP MPH Intern 2022