|* Bello, Niger Governor|
By Pita Chib, Minna
Niger state government claims its records makes it the best improved state in the first quarter of 2019 in Routine Immunization, RI of children.
The State Commissioner for Health and Hospital Management, Dr. Mustapha Jibrin who made the declaration further added that in the last quarter of 2018, the state moved from 53% to 74% making it a 21% improvement between Q4, 2018 and Q1, 2019.
“We hope that in the next quarter, we will hit the 80% landmark because we have started putting all the strategies in place to ensure that all our local government areas are over 70%, he maintained during the Africa Vaccines Week organised by the Coalition on Maternal and Newborn Child Health in Niger state (COMiN) in Collaboration with Niger State Emergency Routine Immunization Coordinating Center (SERICC) in Minna.
The Commissioner who was represented by the Acting Executive Director, Niger state Primary Health Card Development Agency (NSPHCDA), Ndanusa Usman, added that the state moved from 21 percent upward to claim the best improved across the country after it left the previous 53% to its current 74% in the Card plus History indicator.
According to him, “in Nigeria, Niger state is the best improved state in the first quarter of 2019. In the last quarter of 2018, the state was 53% to 74% making it a 21% improvement between Q4, 2018 and Q1, 2019.
“We hope that in the next quarter, we will hit the 80% landmark because we have started putting all the strategies in place to ensure that all our local government areas are over 70%.”
The Program Manager, SERICC, Dr. Ahmed Abdulsalam, said the preliminary findings for Lots Quality Assurance Sampling (LQAS) was for 24 states across the country.
Abdulsalam added that “in Niger state, 60 children are sampled in every LGA; the national average Target is 80% and Niger has performed credibly because if a state passes the LQAS for 3 to 4 rounds it is recognized nationally and Niger Rose from 53% to 74% which means it achieved a whopping 21% improvement.”
In the national indicator, Zamfara is the worst state in the first quarter of 2019 as it dropped from its 40 % in the 4th quarter of 2018 to 36% in the 1st quarter of 2019; while Kano moved from 82% to 89% making just 7% improvement.
Earlier, the state Chairperson, COMiN, Mary Jalingo, commended the state government for being proactive, saying “we want the government to sustain this feat by ensuring community engagement at the grassroots level.”