The United States government, in collaboration with the Nigerian government, is working towards ensuring better health for Nigerians while also assisting in controlling the latter's population explosion.
The US Envoy to Nigeria, Ambassador Terrence McCulley, disclosed this during the public presentation of Expanded Social Marketing Project in Nigeria estimated at $56.3 million and a new brand of low dose oral contraceptive known as Combination 3.
Terrence added that for more than 50 years, the United States has been a committed partner in the promotion of Nigeria's successful, effective and sustainable development interventions
The ESMPIN and the child spacing contraceptive are the initiatives of a non-governmental organization, Society for Family Health.
The envoy said: "The aim of this project is to improve the overall health of women and children in Nigeria and this will be achieved by increasing the use and accessibility of child spacing methods and child healthcare products and services.
"Today, I reaffirm the United States government's commitment to supporting the government of Nigeria in achieving health goals. The United States aligns with Nigeria's vision of a strong public service and private sector that meets the country's family care giving objectives."
According to him, "the United States and Nigeria are partners in improving health services while expanding access through the privatization of healthy commodity distribution and marketing. Because Nigeria has one of the strongest health sectors in sub-Saharan Africa, it is imperative that we continue to support accessible and affordable high quality health products."
"Recently it was reported that Nigeria is the 6th most populated country in the world and there is an opportunity in bringing about a youthful population if we put certain things in place. There is also an opportunity to put certain things in place and slow down the population growth so that our resources can match what we do."
Inaugurating the contraceptive on behalf of the Federal Government, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu expressed concern over the increasing population.
Chukwu stressed the need for couples to imbibe child spacing methodologies to control the nation's population.
The minister expressed the Federal Government's appreciation to President Barack Obama of the United States for what they have been doing to improve the health sector in Nigeria.
According to him, "our average national mortality rate is 545. For every 100,000 women, you don't need to be a prophet by commission to realize that no less than 500 women do not live to see their children and it is so bad."
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