The Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) on health has released data indices with Zamfara State rated as least in neonatal and under-five mortality rate in the North West zone, despite insecurity in the state.
In a data released for 2021, the indices indicated that Zamfara recorded positive strides on health.
The Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) is designed to collect statistically robust and internationally comparable estimates of key indicators that are used to assess the situation of children and women in the areas of health, education and child protections.
The survey indicated that Zamfara has 31 neonatal mortality rate per one thousand live births and is the highest performing State across the North West zone.
Also, under five mortality rate, Zamfara State experienced 136 death per 1000 live birth (0 to 5 years) putting it second performing State, after Kaduna that top the survey.
Zamfara State still has high potential of achieving SDG 3.2 on under-five child mortality, which is aimed to reduce to at least 25 deaths per 1,000 live births by 2030.
The survey also indicated Kebbi, Katsina and Jigawa having under five highest mortality rate with 202, 179 and 174 respectively.
On maternal and newborn cascade, Zamfarawas recorded low performances, requiring more improvement to meet the national target, while on early initiation of breastfeeding the State top the survey.
Commenting on the outcome of the survey, the Executive Secretary Zamfara State Primary Health Care Board, Dr. Tukur Isma’il attributed the success recorded to the commitment of Governor Bello Muhammad Matawalle in the payment of counterpart funding on various health intervention programmes and support from development partners working in the health sector.
He further attributed coordination roles played by the Commissioner of Health in the state, Aliyu Abubakar, support from traditional, religious and community leaders as well as acceptance from general communities on measures to promote health care delivery services.
On the low performed areas cited by the survey, Dr. Isma’il said the recent infrastructure and human resource put in place by Matawalle administration especially provision of one functional PHC in each of the 147 wards and recent recruitment of health personnel as well as provision of quality and affordable drugs would bridge the gaps in addressing the challenges.
“The Establishment of Zamfara State Contributory Health Care Management Agency (ZAMCHEMA) would offer free and affordable health services to less privileged and vulnerable persons.
“Provision of 147 tricycle ambulances to 147 PHCs would lead to access to health facilities especially in the rural and hard to reach communities.
“These efforts by the present administration of Governor Bello Matawalle would go along way in reducing high number of home delivery as well as maternal mortality rate” he assured.
The Executive Secretary maintained that despite the prevailing insecurity in the State, there is positive strides on health care delivery services in the state.