As part of efforts to manage medical service delivery to Nigerian pilgrims for 2017 Hajj, the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has reaffirmed its partnership with State Muslim Pilgrims’ Welfare Boards, Agencies and Commissions to save cost for the state and Federal Governments.
The Chairman of NAHCON Abdullahi Mukhtar Muhammad while briefing senior management staff of the commission Wednesday in Abuja reiterated the resolve of his leadership to ensure that Nigerian pilgrims receive the maximum services due to them during the forthcoming Hajj through the initiatives being introduced in all the critical components of Hajj including accommodation, feeding and medical.
Muhammad said the policy which was initiated and partly implemented in the 2016 Hajj will see, NAHCON providing 40 percent of the total required medical personnel while states will complement the remaining 60 percent.
Also, the commission will provide 70 percent off all medical consumables while state will provide the remaining 30 percent.
The NAHCON boss said the medical reform was commended last year by the Saudi Arabia authorities which expressed happiness with Nigeria reducing the number of clinics in the Holy Land.
Muhammad cited an instance of Pakistan with over 260,000 pilgrims but having only one big clinic in Makkah and about 150 medical personnel, compared to Nigeria which before the 2016 Hajj used to have many clinics and thousands of personnel to serve 75,000 pilgrims.
He said, "These medical personnel are needed in our hospitals. The reform will drastically reduce the number of personnel who would be useful in our state and federal hospitals and medical centers."
He therefore urged the state boards to fully key into the system for a more coordinated, efficient and effective medical service delivery as personnel would be posted to states other than their origins for them to share ethno-cultural experiences.
He said this will enhancing national integration and coexistence through Hajj as it was also done in the allocation of accommodation to pilgrims in Madinah.