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HEALTH CARE SECTOR REFORM IN NIGERIA: ISSUES ON EQUITY, ACCESS AND DEMOGRAPHIC DEFINITION IN HEALTHCARE SERVICE PROVISION

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Author(s): Yahya Saleh Ibrahim | Mohamad Khan Jamal Khan

Journal: Economics and Finance Review
ISSN 2047-0401

Volume: 1;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 01;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: Demographic Characteristics | Equity | Accessibility | National Health Insurance Scheme

ABSTRACT
The purpose of this article is to make contribution in the area of debate on whether reform is ultimately the solution to an ailing healthcare provision, and to at the same time aggregate the fact on whether same reform will succeed in bridging the gap in the differentiation in demographic characterization that suffered deprivationof access and equity to healthcare services to those defined categories such as age, gender, marital status,ethnic group, and occupation type. The authors draw some inferences from statistics available in the literature that has to do with Nigeria healthcare as presented by professionals in the field and official documents. Theyalso gather data through the use of questionnaire as pilot tests to acquire the data used in this research. The questionnaires distributed were about 60 but 50 were returned and 43 were found to be eligible for this research. A chi-square method of analysis was used to process the results on spss version 15; two hypotheseswere tested to find out on whether or not healthcare equity and accessibility is to all citizens with the above defined demographic characteristics. The research was able to conclude that despite the massive advertisementby the National Health Insurance Scheme the reform was only able to achieve a segmental success, with the federal public sector with permanent income benefitting. The research was also able to obtain a result on age,equity and access ,the results is apparently encouraging, with this we accepted that equity and access is to all age classification, while as for gender we rejected the assertion that healthcare by the reform is to all gender definition, on the other hand a close look at marital status, ethnic group and occupation with the chi-square results the research accepted , that health provision by the reform has successfully provided care to the above classification. There is a number of implications for practice and choice of reform system that will carter for all manner of citizens. One of the implication should be on recognizing the difficulty the women gender faces, as depicted from the record, they have high number of clinical attendance than men (Tan, 2010), yet has less means of livelihood or wholly dependent on men, who may decides to be unconcerned about their situation( Tan, 2010). Secondly, the lopsided application of the policy to only those in formal sector contradicted the fundamental right of the citizens to having access to free medical service (Law of Nigeria, 1999). Thirdly even in the formal sector only 4 million people benefitted as from 2005 to date ( Dogo, 2008), this shows the lack of commitment of the government to the welfare of its citizens. There is the need for the decisions and intentions of the government, policy makers, and experts to be in congruence with that of the citizens or else any reform willonly be a cosmetization of reality and will be in variance with rationality. The paper provides a baseline for further discussion on the rationality of reform in healthcare sector in the developing countries.
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