2019 budget: Health ministry gets N315.62bn
President Muhammadu Buhari has proposed a recurrent expenditure of N315.62 billion for the ministry of health in its 2019 appropriation bill summited to the National Assembly.
This is about 46.3 billion increase from last year’s recurrent expenditure, which was N269.3 billion.
The president, while reading his budget presentation at the joint session of the National Assembly in Abuja, said the allocation to the ministry represents significant increase over votes in previous budgets.
He also noted that this underscores the federal government’s commitment to increase investment in national security and human capital development.
The president explained that there is need to focus on health because it is an important aspiration for human capital development, adding that government will also continue to strive to make Nigerians healthy and happy.
He affirmed that this is in addition to building world class treatment centres, including cancer, and to establish a health system that prioritises primary healthcare so that millions of Nigerians can be insured for a maxmum package of health services.
“In so doing, we will reduce the stress, strains and costs that the Nigerian people face in accessing decent health care,” he added.
The president also had included in the 2019 fiscal year the 1 percent Consolidated Revenue Fund earmarked for the Basic Health Care Provision Fund. This amounts to N51.22 billion, this is however, lower than what was obtainable in 2018. The Basic Healthcare provision fund, in the 2018 appropriate bill was N55 billion.
He also said that 1 percent of the Consolidated Revenue Fund amounting to N51.22 billion has been earmarked for the Basic Health Care Provision Fund, and other related commitments.
The civil society organisations in the health sector have decried the late release or non-release of funding for most health interventions in the country.
According to them most times, increased funding does not necessarily translate to efficient service delivery, while stating that the performance of the 2019 budget will largely be dependent on how much is released and how timely these releases are made.