Adama Sani brought her son to Lemu Primary Health Centre (PHC) in Lemu community, Gbako Local Government Area (LGA) of Niger State. According to Sani, services at the PHC started improving 2 years ago, thanks to the intervention of the Niger State Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) office. “Before, when you bring your child here, he or she would have to lie on a mat because there were no beds. But now there are beds in the hospital. Also, anytime you come, even at night you only need to knock on the door of the refurbished staff quarters and the health workers will come and attend to you. They provide services all the time”, Sani said, carrying her son who had already been attended to.
Lemu PHC used to be extremely dilapidated said Moses Yisa, the officer in-charge of the facility. “Before the intervention of the SDGs, the hospital was like a house for goats. There was no water, no drugs, nothing that we could work with. Things have improved tremendously since it was rehabilitated and refurbished”. According to Yisa, the PHC now has a solar borehole and toilet facilities, and both male and female wards have automated beds and mattresses, all supplied by the SDGs. All these, including the newly built staff quarters, have improved the quality of services they provide to members of Lemu community, he added.
Yisa however lamented that water is still not connected to the toilets in the health facility, and health workers and patients must fetch the water themselves. Also, the staff quarters cannot accommodate all the facility’s staff. He therefore implored Gbako LGA Council and the Niger State government to rehabilitate the old staff quarters which was not part of the initial renovation. The PHC doesn’t have a fence, and according to Yisa, this poses a security threat to health workers and patients.
When health facilities are equipped to provide quality services, patients are guaranteed the care they need, and health workers can provide that care with ease. When health care is made accessible to rural community dwellers, it improves the health indices of the state and ultimately the country. In rehabilitating and refurbishing Lemu PHC, the Niger state SDGs have made a commendable move. It shouldn’t take much of an effort to address their other needs which include,
- Fencing the PHC to improve security of health workers and patients
- Connecting the toilet facilities in the PHC to the solar powered borehole, so that patients and health workers can use the toilets with ease.
Rehabilitating the old staff quarters in the PHC, so that more health workers can be accommodated.