Improving government health facility infrastructure. PATHS1 Nigeria

Authors: Health Partners International
Document Type: Policy and technical briefs
Publication Date: 2008

This policy brief focuses on improving government health facility infrastructure in Nigeria. Government health facilities in Enugu, Jigawa and Benue States had suffered from years of neglect, with few resources allocated for repairs and maintenance. Rehabilitation of these facilities was considered vital to improve service delivery. In most locations no expansion of facilities was thought to be required. The overriding need was to carry out a sensible rationalisation programme, concentrating on the comprehensive overhaul of key buildings. In the large compounds, outlying structures away from core facilities were not included. In addition, emphasis was placed on restoring dysfunctional electrical, water and sanitation systems and on ensuring that work on fabric and fittings was carried out using durable and low maintenance materials.

Key lessons learned from this process:

Although infrastructural rehabilitation is vital for other service and system strengthening initiatives, attention needs to be paid to:

  1. Gathering up-to-date utilisation data (both current and projected)
  2. Strengthening government capacity to manage infrastructural rehabilitation programmes
  3. Developing standard options/approaches for facilities in order to guide the local architects
  4. Utilising an anonymous, fair and transparent tendering process
  5. Implementing a programme-specific system for planning permission where a formal one does not exist
  6. Adopting robust financial control systems
  7. Ensuring ongoing maintenance (both systems development and financial release)


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Tags: Nigeria, Health policy, Health planning, Institutional strengthening, Monitoring and evaluation, PATHS, Infrastructure maintenance,