WHAT ARE HEALTH CARE SERVICES?
Health services include all services dealing with the diagnosis and treatment of disease, or the promotion, maintenance and restoration of health. They include personal and non-personal health services (WHO, 2010; Health Care Services) Health services are the most visible functions of any health system, both to users and the general public. Service provision refers to the way inputs such as money, staff, equipment and drugs are combined to allow the delivery of health interventions. Improving access, coverage and quality of services depends on these key resources being available; on the ways services are organized and managed, and on incentives influencing providers and users Health services are the most visible part of any health system, both to users and the general public. Health services, be they promotion, prevention, treatment or rehabilitation, may be delivered in the home, the community, the workplace, or in health facilities. Effective health service delivery depends on having some key resources: motivated staff, equipment, information and finance, and adequate drugs. Improving access, coverage and quality of health services also depends on the ways services are organized and managed, and on the incentives influencing providers and users. A health system needs staff, funds, information, supplies, transport, communications and overall guidance and direction. And it needs to provide services that are responsive and financially fair, while treating people decently. (www.who.int/healthsystems/about/en/) SITUATIONAL ANALYSIS
The poor state of health systems in many parts of the developing world is one of the greatest barriers to increasing access to essential health care. However, problems with health systems are not confined to poor countries. Some rich countries have large populations without access to care because of inequitable arrangements for social protection. Others are struggling with escalating costs because of inefficient use of resources. Overall, there is a growing recognition that to maintain and improve the health of the world, governments must shape sound, efficient health systems that provide effective disease prevention and treatment to all women, men and children, no matter who they are or where they live. WHO is committed to assisting its member states with that task. The current state of our health system in Nigeria is quite worrisome. Our Health indicators and statistics are abysmal. We are yet to make significant improvement in the area of maternal and child health; life expectancy at birth of our men and women falls below 50 years; doctor to population ratio is 3 per 10,000 compared to united States which stands at 26 per 10,000.Meeting the targets of MDGs in 2015 is still a mirage. The scourge of malaria, tuberculosis and HIV and AIDS is not abating. Access to safe, emigration of health professionals, clean water in our cities and villages is to say the least, poor. The emigration of health professionals out of the shores of the land, regarded as brain drain is seen by many as a form of neo-colonialism by the west. Nigeria spends so much to train her professionals, especially medical doctors only to lose them soon after they complete their training programmes to UK, US and other European countries. Non-functional primary health care (PHC) system in the country which should cater for about 70% of health needs of the entire population has put good health care delivery to people in jeopardy. In a country, where the quality of life is getting worse in the midst of rising national wealth, the national health statistics remain quite abysmal with life expectancy at birth at an all time low of 43 years. An examination of the three mortality rates shows the worsening of the situation following 1985, the year of Babangida Structural Adjustment Programme: maternal mortality, infant mortality and under-five mortality rates have worsened; life expectancy at birth fell...
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