BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
An effective health care is a basic and inescapable human necessity. According to the World Health Organization (WHO, 2005), fifty percent of\seconomic growth differentials between developed and developing nation is linked to ill-health and poor life expectancy. Developed\scountries spend a significant proportion of their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) on Health Care because they believe that their resident health can\sserve as a primary motivator for economic activity and development.
To this purpose, Governments in Nigeria, over the years have been making\sfrantic efforts at ensuring that there is an increase in the level of public expenditure on health. In 1970, recurrent expenditure on health was\sN12.48 million.
This value soared astronomically to N52.78 million and N132.02 million in 1980 and 1985 correspondingly. This pattern continues as\sthe expenditure climbed progressively form 575.3 million in 1989 to N68.20 millions 1991 and further to 72290.07 million and 98.200 million in 2007\sand 2008 correspondingly. The aforementioned situation clearly underlines the fact that health care expenditure in Nigeria has been on the\sincrease throughout the years.
However, in spite of all these increase, considerable impact has not been produced in the field of decrease of newborn, under five\sand maternal mortalities since 1970. For instance, the Nigeria’s incidence of infant mortality (91 per 1000 live births) is among the highest in the\sworld, and the vaccine coverage has plummeted below thirty percent while the mortality rate for children under age five is 192 deaths\sper one thousand.
By year 2007, it was stated that more than one hundred and thirty four thousand women died from pregnancy\scomplications. In addition, the life expectancy ratio on the average has been on the fall across the study period. It should however be\snoted that despite the increase in government expenditure in health care in Nigeria, the contribution of this to health is still marginally low\swhereas the extent and scale of its impact on economic growth is uncertain .
The link between human capital and economic growth has attracted extensive inquiry in the literature .
The role of Human\scapital in ensuring sustainable economic Growth has been documented. Growth theories imply the relevance of human capital in achieving\ssignificant growth in the economy. The economic concept of human capital comprises education, health, training, migration, and other\sinvestments that boost an individual’s productivity.
Outcome from various studies tend to imply that there is a good correlation\sbetween health status and sustainable economic growth. The universal recognition of this link encouraged the importance of health outcome\sin the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) (MDGs). In truth three of the aims are health specific while the others might also be regarded as health\senhancing.
Thus, the development of human capital becomes more vital in many resource constraint countries like Nigeria. The\sopportunity costs of spending on health is quite significant and therefore the necessity for a justification on the increase or otherwise of health spending in\sNigeria. Incidentally, Nigeria is among the developing nations with poor health results and its related concerns.
The health status of\sNigeria is still relatively low and exists below that of certain countries in West Africa. Low life expectancy at birth, high newborn and maternal\smortality rates, malaria and tuberculosis alictions are some of the distinctive traits of the Nigeria`s health situation. Life expectancy at\sbirth in Nigeria was estimated at only 48 in 2007, compared with 56 in Ghana.
This is supported by the large numbers of women who die\sof problems during pregnancy or childbirth. Although the global maternal mortality ratio fell below 400 maternal deaths per 100 000 live\sbirths in 2008, the maternal mortality ratio for Nigeria was 1100 per 100 000 live births, remains on the high when compared to 560 and 910 in\sGhana and Guinea respectively.
The prevalence of HIV/AIDS among individuals aged 15 and above infection has contributed considerably to\sNigeria’s poor life expectancy (WHO 2010). (WHO 2010). It was estimated at 2,886 per 100,000 persons. It is above the Prevalence rate in Ghana (1722), but\sbelow that of Cameroun (4580). (4580).
Also, the per capital income in Nigeria is poor, with more than half of the population going below the\spoverty line. Thus, supply of necessary funds for health care either by the home or the government remains challenging.
The terrible economic position in Nigeria as respects the overall living standard and the access to the basic requirements of life has been poor\sand nothing to write home about.
Access to quality health care has constantly eluded a great majority of the poor Nigerian masses while\sthe rich prefer to journey out in quest of quality health care services as a result of the near comatose state of our health care system. This\scan largely be ascribed to the existing standard of life which has been caused by the current economic mess the nation currently\sfinds herself.
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The principal purpose of the study is to investigate health care cost standard of living on the Nigerian economy. Other specific objectives of the study\sinclude;
To assess the need for an effective health care delivery on the economy of Nigeria.
To determine the importance of health care expense on standard of living of Nigerians.
To examine the current state of Nigerian health care system in Nigeria.
To determine the relationship between health care expense and the economy of Nigeria.
To offer strategies of boosting the economy of Nigeria through an effective health care system.
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The study would be of importance to the development of the health sector and by extension the development of the economy. The study\swould also be of tremendous relevance to students, researchers and scholars who are interested in doing further studies on the subject\smatter by supplying important material for the topic.
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