Nigeria currently has some of the worst health outcomes in the world, due in part to the poor state of primary health care services, which are characterised by a lack of coverage, especially in rural areas, inadequate health facilities and high out of pocket payments. The 2014 National Health Act (NHAct), which sets out a legal framework for the provision of health services, has the potential to transform healthcare provision in Nigeria and, through the Basic Health Care Provision Fund (BHCPF) to extend primary health care to all Nigerians. As such, the NHAct has become synonymous with the country’s roadmap to Universal Health Coverage (UHC).
The NHAct is currently at a critical stage where guidelines are being developed for its implementation in concurrence with a review of Nigeria’s 2004 National Health Policy, the draft Healthcare Financing Policy and the National Strategic Health Development Plan (2010-2015). As part of this process researchers from Health Policy Research Group (HPRG) at the University of Nigeria are playing a prominent role, enabled by their reputation as experts in the field of health financing and policy and trusting relationships with both health policymakers and civil society organisations.