Health is wealth. That is why the health sector is one of the most important sectors in virtually every country in the world. In Nigeria, there are two main bodies responsible for protecting public health. They are the Federal Ministry of Health and the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
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In these times of uncertainty, it pays to know more about these bodies as regards what they do and the important roles they are playing in containing the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in Nigeria.
Federal Ministry of Health (Nigeria)
The Federal Ministry of Health is the body tasked with implementing policies related to health in Nigeria. It has two ministers and a perm secretary at the helm. The current Minister of Health is Osagie Ehanire while the current Minister of State for Health is Olorunimbe Mamora.
The ministry is made up of several departments that have different functions related to health. However, its major aim is to focus on all the factors at play when it comes to ensuring a healthy Nigeria.
Being the foremost health department in the country, the Federal Ministry of Health has been providing the public with information about the coronavirus (COVID-19) and revealing the policies put in place to contain its spread. Follow The Ministry of Health on Twitter to get daily updates concerning COVID-19.
Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC)
The Nigerian Centre For Disease Control (NCDC) is an agency concerned with the control of communicable diseases in Nigeria. It is a subsidiary of the Federal Ministry of Health and it is headquartered in Abuja, Nigeria. The agency’s Chief Executive Officer is Chikwe Ihekweazu, an epidemiologist and public health physician.
The NCDC was established in 2011 when some divisions of the Federal Ministry of Health branched off to form the nucleus of the agency.
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The departments at the time were the Epidemiology Division, the Avian Influenza Project and its laboratories; and the Nigeria Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Programme (NFELTP). In November 2018, President Buhari signed the bill for an act to establish the NCDC.
Today, the NCDC comprises a total of 213 staff working across its locations. The members of staff work in six directories, four of which are Technical Directories. These include;
1. Public Health Laboratory Services
2. Prevention Programmes and Knowledge Management
3. Emergency Preparedness and Response
4. Surveillance and Epidemiology
5. Finance and Accounts
6. Administration and Human Resources
As we all know, the NCDC is Nigeria’s leading national public health institute. This makes it the go-to platform for all cases regarding the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Since the index case of the virus was detected in Nigeria, the NCDC has actively taken measures to curb the disease from spreading. Follow the NCDC on Twitter for updates and information about COVID-19.
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