DETERMINED to improve the quality of life in the third-tier of government, local councils in Enugu State have recently commenced recruitment of more health workers. The renewed drive for more staffing came on the heels of the human resource for health workload analysis conducted in January 2012 by the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID) Partnership for Transforming Health Systems (PATHS2) project.
Baseline assessments conducted in PATHS2-supported states revealed a skewed distribution of health workers in favour of tertiary and secondary levels of care as well as in favour of urban health facilities. In Enugu State for example, 50 per cent of the skilled medical and nursing workforce are in tertiary hospitals. The rest are split between the secondary and primary healthcare facilities, despite their large numbers.
As part of systems strengthening effort, States Ministries of Health and Local Governments are expected to undertake strategic and systematic approaches to ensure an equitable distribution and deployment of the health personnel based on evidence such as through an analysis of workload in health facilities.
Results from this analysis showed that some LGAs in the State require more health workers, but others need to strengthen their monitoring and supervision systems especially in the primary health centres. At a stakeholders' meeting facilitated by the State Ministry of Health to disseminate findings and recommendations from the analysis, Heads of Department of Health for Uzouwani, Nsukka and Igbo- Etiti LGAs observed that so far in 2012, total number of new health workers recruited for each LGA is : Uzouwani- 57, Igbo-Etiti 75, and Nsukka- 168. Chairman Nkanu East LGA, Pastor Sam Iyiogwe, during an advocacy meeting by PATHS2 to the council reiterated commitment to tackling the lopsidedness in staffing .
Culled from the Nigerian Vanguard Newspaper