Through this contract from DFID towards supporting the National Malaria program in some states in Nigeria, Malaria Consortium (MC) being the lead partner sub-contracted this project to HERFON in order to achieve operational efficiency. HERFON led the advocacy efforts focused on incremental budgetary allocation for malaria control activities, implementation in target states comprising Niger, Lagos, Ogun, Kano, Katsina, Anambra, Enugu, Jigawa, Kaduna and Yobe. State malaria action plan, free airtime for radio/TV jingles, use of Insecticide Treated Nets (ITN) and Artemisinin Combination Therapy (ACT) among others. The Foundation worked collaboratively with three other program-implementing partners (CHAN, CHAN MEDIPHARM, CCPN, and FOMWAN) to increase community awareness and demand for effective malaria treatment and prevention
In a bid to sustain advocacy around the implementation of the National Health Act, HERFON in the first quarter of 2015 applied for a small grant under Round Three of the Health Policy Action Fund (HPAF) which was launched by Oxfam in 2010 and supported by the International Health Partnership and related initiatives (IHP+) and World Health Organization (WHO). HERFON is the only NGO in Nigeria currently implementing the grant alongside other NGOs from among Benin, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Gambia, Uganda, Mozambique, Cameroun and Cape Verde Islands.
The aim of the fund is to support health organizations, networks and coalitions in third world countries to become more effectively engaged in national health policy processes, as well as contribute to the effectiveness of development cooperation and hold partners accountable for their commitments.
HERFON’s mandate is therefore to facilitate and fast–track the implementation of the key provisions of the 2014 National Health Act (NHA) through sustained advocacy, awareness creation and the active participation of key stakeholders in the health sector including CSOs and the general public.
HERFON received a grant from the PATH team to advocate for basket funding for Routine Immunization (RI) in Nasarawa State. Routine Immunization, which has been described as one of the most cost-effective public health interventions, has generally been on the decline in Nigeria within the North West, North East and North Central zones where Nasarawa State is located. Through this project, a Policy on Basket Funding for RI in Primary Health Care service delivery was developed in Nasarawa State. This document is yet to be validated for continued advocacy and stakeholders buy-in.
The Advocacy for Primary Health Care Reform (APHCR) is a three-year (September 2013 to August 2016) ‘Accountable Grant’ funded by UK Department for International Development in Nigeria (DfID) and managed by HERFON. The project only recently attained an ‘A’ rating for the second year running, during the recently concluded annual performance appraisal conducted by DFID. The project is aimed at contributing to improvements in health outcomes by fostering key reforms at the National and State level in three core areas: Primary Heath Care under One Roof (PHCOUR), Free Maternal, New–born and Child policy, and National Health Bill
Achievements of the APHCR Program
The passage of the 2014 National Health Act by the National Assembly (NASS) and supported its signing into Law by President Good luck Jonathan through the Health Sector Reform Coalition
The project developed a series of scorecards to assess and compare state progress on implementation of the PHCUOR reforms. This has engaged interest from political leaders and appears to be generating activities for further action. The third scorecard for the implementation of the PHCUOR was carried out and reported to the National Council on Health (NCH) in March 2016 which has begun to reshape health reforms at national and sub national levels. The structure for the establishment and administration of the PHCUOR is now visible in 32 states of 37 states across the Federation.
Increase in the number of policies and guidelines on PHC reform. All APHCR-supported states have new or amended policies on PHC reform.
Six States passed PHC Under One Roof legislation (as at 2014) and in 2015, additional four states now have PHC law which conform with required standards
Six additional States pass appropriately costed policies or legislation guaranteeing free maternal and child health care at the point of use. Presently, Abia FMNCH Law is undergoing its second reading before the State House of Assembly