The Federal Government has inauguratedf fouradolescent health and development policy from 2021 to 2025.
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, said this at the opening
of the 1st African and 2nd Nigeria conference on adolescent
health and development on Thursday, in Abuja.
The minister said that the policy was to ensure that the nation’s health system was adequately responsive to adolescent and young people’s health.
Ehanire, represented by Dr Salma Anas-kolo, Director of Family Health in the ministry, said that the policy would ensure that it delivers quality and gender sensitive.
He said that the theme, “Fulfilling Promise, Optimising Investment in Adolescent Health and Wellbeing in Africa” would ensure proper investment in the health and wellbeing of adolescent and young people.
Ehanire said the country had reviewed the National Policy on Adolescent Development and Health and translated it into an implementation plan and monitoring and evaluation framework.
“The four policies are National Adolescent Health and Development
Policy 2021 to 2025, National Adolescent and Young People’s Health and
Development Implementation Plan 2021 to 2025.
“Others are National Adolescent and Young People’s Health and
Development Monitoring and Evaluation Framework 2021 to 2025,’’he said.
Ehanire said that the policy would ensure equipment health services that
effectively meet the preventive, curative and rehabilitative health needs of young people.
According to him, the implementation plan has 12 thematic areas which
address the key priority focus in the policy.
He said that the focus for interventions and programmes are mental health, violence and injury, sexual and reproductive health and rights, nutrition and physical activity, non-communicable diseases, disabilities, communicable diseases, oral health and system performance, among others.
The minister said that the policy would centre around improving the health of adolescent and young persons.
According to him, the conference is a unique opportunity for stakeholders working in adolescent space, policy makers and young people to appraise progress made with fulfilling promises related to adolescent and young people.
He said that the present administration believed that investment in the health of youths was key to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and demographic dividends.
A young adolescent, Isabel Anani, said that adolescent stage was characterised by dynamic brain development, in which interaction with the social environment shapes the capabilities they take forward into adulthood.
According to the 13 years old girl, it is during adolescence, a child acquires the physical, cognitive, emotional, social and economic resources that are the foundation for later life, health and wellbeing.
Anani said that Africa had the problem of limited resources and technical capabilities compared to counterparts in other continents like Europe, America and even Asia.
“An average adolescent in Africa is more vulnerable due to unprecedented forces like poverty, illnesses, malnutrition, poor health care, insecurity and illiteracy to mention but a few,”she said.
Anani called on government to establish a system for the training, mentoring and participation of youth health advocates with a potential to transform traditional models of health care delivery and create an adolescent responsive health system.
Dr Haliru Yahaya, Emir of Shonga, Kwara State, promised that the community would help the country achieves the adolescent goals.
Yahaya said the youths were the active group in any country and also very vulnerable to lot of things.
According to him, he will ensure that adolescent issues will be treated by both the cultural and traditional point.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that states gave the adolescent health score cards.
The highlight of the conferences was the award given of first, second and third place that designed the logo.