It noted besides shortage of competent health workers, including nurse, midwives, Community Health Extension Workers (CHEWs), PHC facilities require renovations.

The agency added that in partnership with National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), it will recommend that corps members in medical line be deployed to PHC centres.

Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of NPHCDA, Dr. Faisal Shuaib, who spoke during launch of Community-Based Health Research Innovative Training and Services Programme (CRISP) in Abuja, lamented that some health officers in PHCs were incompetent, and in facilities  as a result of political favours.

Urging the government, especially at state level, to muster the will to weed out incompetent workers in PHCs,  NPHCDA said it would recruit workers to PHCs facilities, from teaching hospitals.

He said: “We did a comprehensive PHC assessment for the first time, and this is what the result says: 70 per cent of primary healthcare centres don’t have required human resources.

“We will recruit additional human resources to specific  centres. We are recruiting Skilled Birth Attendants (SBAs) – nurses, midwives, community health extension workers trained on how to manage situations during pregnancy and delivery, of course under supervision. 

“We are hopeful before end of 2023, we would have recruited 3,806 nurses, midwives and community health extension workers, and by 2030, we will close the gap to about 25,000. 

“We are going to be covering teaching hospitals and tertiary institution. By end of 2023, we would have covered 1,643 primary healthcare centres. But by end of 2030, we hope to have covered each ward with these human resources. We are going across the 774 local governments.”

‘’Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, represented by Minister of Women Affairs, Pauline Tallen, said: “There is not a single country in the world that can boast of effective health care delivery without adequate and well distributed human resource for health.

‘’No matter how much of a masterpiece the architecture of a health facility is, or how sophisticated the equipment is, or even the availability of commodities, a health care delivery system will not function optimally if there are not enough skilled workers. 

“For this reason, I think there is no better way to tackle challenges of health care delivery in Nigeria than to close the gap on equitable availability of skilled health workers in PHC facilities, which can be achieved by a creative measure such as CRISP.”