The House of Representatives has called on the Federal Government to consider subsidizing malaria drugs, should it prove challenging to provide them for free in all government-owned health centers across Nigeria. The call stems from the urgent need to address the increasing prevalence of malaria in the country.
Speaking at the inaugural meeting of the Committee on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Control, the committee’s chairman, Amobi Ogar, emphasized that the rising rates of malaria infections have created a pressing health concern. The primary obstacle, as Ogar pointed out, is the prohibitively high cost of malaria drugs, which prevents many Nigerians from accessing essential treatment.
Furthermore, Ogar committed the committee to taking measures to eliminate substandard and counterfeit malaria drugs. They intend to accomplish this by introducing appropriate sanctions for those involved in the production of subpar medications.
The committee also plans to scrutinize the operations and processes of the Global Fund concerning its contributions to the fight against HIV/AIDS.
Ogar expressed deep concern about the devastating impact of malaria on the Nigerian population and stressed the need to make malaria drugs more affordable. He argued that, given the high incidence of malaria in Nigeria, it is crucial that these drugs are readily available at government health centers and offered at subsidized rates, if not entirely free.
His vision is to see Nigeria provide its citizens with free or heavily subsidized malaria drugs, making them more accessible to the general population.
The Committee on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Control is tasked with the responsibility of developing legislative measures for the prevention and control of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. It also aims to coordinate and harmonize efforts between governmental and non-governmental organizations involved in HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria initiatives to ensure the effectiveness of disease control, remedies, and care for AIDS patients.