Worried that over 40 per cent of Nigeria’s adult population is hypertensive; the Federal Ministry of Health has entered into partnership with Neimeth Pharmaceuticals which sees the price of antihypertensive drugs cut by half.
According to the Director of Food and Drug Services at the Ministry, Gloria Chukwumah, “4.5 million Nigerians over the age of 15 are hypertensive. The prevalence is much more in the urban than in the rural areas and it affects 40 per cent of the adult population.”
She stated this yesterday at the inauguration of the FITGAH (Fight the Good Fight Against Hypertension) Partnership Working Committee by the permanent secretary of the Ministry, Mr Linus Awute saying the scope of this partnership which will cut across the urban and rural divide will involve mass screening and isolation and medicine administration at lower cost up to 50 per cent for free.
He said the committee will work to bring other organisations into the fight against hypertension to promote efficient healthcare delivery system through rational drug use.
Mr Linus Awute had decried the increasing cost of accessing health care in Nigeria as many patients are forced to make out-of-pocket expenditures noting that this forced many to shy away from accessing health care services even when they are available.
He said: “Health care can never be separated from economic development and the greatness of Nigeria is not oil but its human resources which we must save.”
According to the managing director of Neimeth Pharmaceuticals, Mr. Emmanuel Ekunno, FITGAH is Neimeth’s initiative in ensuring that anti-hypertensive drugs are affordable, available and with effort of partners, it can be administered free to patients.
“Neimeth has decided to cut down 50 per cent on the price of anti-hypertensive drugs so as to make them affordable to Nigerians.
.and with this partnership, patients who are given 2 months free dosage can get the FITGAH armaments at an affordable rate,” he explained.
Neimeth is fighting hypertention with 4A plus 2A strategy and this is in partnership with the Nigerian Heart Foundation. The first 4As are availability, affordability, awareness and action while the other 2As are advocacy and advice for best hypertension care.