The Federal Government will make provisions for additional allowances and incentives for health workers at the frontlines of the fight against COVID-19,
Mr Boss Mustapha, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), said on Friday.
Mustapha made plan known at a briefing by the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, saying, the Federal Government had just signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the frontline health workers.
“Today, the welfare of our frontline heroes, the health workers, came to the front burner.
“I am pleased to inform you that the Federal Ministry of Health working in conjunction with the MDAs and the health sector professional bodies have signed an MoU for various allowances and other incentives,” the SGF, who is the PTF Chairman, said.
He said the full details of the agreement “will be unveiled to you by the Honorable Minister of Health very soon.”
The SGF also said the insurance industry had massively supported Nigeria’s COVID-19 response by giving a life insurance cover to up to 5,000 frontline health workers employed to fight against the pandemic.
“The premium in the sum of N112,500,000 for cover has been fully paid by the Nigerian insurance industry in line with the principle of no premium no cover.
“The PTF wishes to thank the insurance industry immensely and calls on other sectors of the economy to rise up to support the efforts to fight COVID-19.
“I also call on our frontline health workers to double their efforts just as we want to assure them of our determination to protect them,” he said.
Mustapha, citing the importance of food security, further urged farmers across the country to prepare to return to the farm as the planting season commences.
“The Federal Ministry of Agriculture has put in place arrangements for access to farm inputs, extension and other services.
“Let me state that these are unusual times, we are in uncharted territories, and we need to forge ahead.
“As we work out our models, we also draw lessons from other jurisdictions that have had experiences to share.
“We shall, however, continue to pursue the strategy of aggressive testing, detection, isolation, contact tracing, treatment and care,” Mustapha said.
On his part, the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, said COVID-19 starter packs had now been despatched to all tertiary health institutions and Federal Medical Centres to complement previous packages sent to the states.
The starter packs “consist of medical consumables and disposables to ensure that our frontline health workers are protected and also that there is synergy and collaboration between federal tertiary institutions and the host state health network,” Ehanire said.