By Muhammad Sani, Bauchi
The United States of America has promised to improve support in Nigeria through its programs to boost healthcare delivery, this was disclosed in a teleconference with the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard and Bauchi State Governor, Sen. Bala Mohammed while launching the covid-19 Emergency Operations Center.
Emergency Operation Centers (EOCs) are government led initiatives aimed at improving information sharing and joint programming in planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation towards improved public health emergency management, in this case, for covid-19.
According to the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard, USAID has been intervening in different sectors of Nigeria’s economy through grants and supports running into several billions of dollars.
The United States Agency for International Development or USAID is an independent agency of the United States Federal Government that is primarily responsible for administering civilian foreign aid and development assistance.
She also revealed that USAID identified eight states in Nigeria including Bauchi which it will be supporting in the area of managing the outbreak of the covid-19 pandemic; she commended Bauchi State Government for its commitment to fight the spread of the virus; “everything possible must be done to curb the pandemic from spreading further among communities” she said.
While launching the covid-19 EOC funded by USAID and implemented by JHPIEGO under the RISE Project in Bauchi, Governor Sen. Bala Mohammed commended the US government for its interventions; “it has strengthened democratic rule in the state”, he said.
The RISE Project is working to achieve a shared vision of attaining and maintaining epidemic control, with stronger local partners capable of managing and achieving results through sustainable, self-reliant and resilient health systems.
Governor Mohammed said, Bauchi State is one of the epicenters of covid-19 pandemic in the northern states and that his administration is doing everything humanly possible to protect citizens and check the spread of the virus in the state. The EOC came at the right time, it will assist in tackling the spread of covid-19 pandemic in the state with data and accuracy in statistics that are required for positive progress.
He assured the US Ambassador that his administration will continue to collaborate with USAID in its efforts to bring development in the areas of healthcare reforms and education.
On his part, Bauchi State Commissioner for Health, Dr Aliyu Maigoro, said the intervention will go a long way to improve case management and covid-19 surveillance in the state.