The Nigerian Government with support from the World Health Organization, has launched the Nigeria National Essential Diagnostic list.
This makes Nigeria the first in Africa and fourth in the world following India, Bangladesh and Pakistan, to have adopted the WHO concept of Essential Diagnostic Lists aligned to the disease prevalence in their country.
The Minister of Health Osagie Ehanire during the unveiling of the list in Abuja said the Nigerian Government will support the selection, procurement, supply, donation or provision of in-vitro diagnostics and also improve patient care as well as in-country diagnostic capacity. The Essential Diagnostic List is to provide evidence-based guidance to countries to enable them create their own National lists of essential diagnostic tests and tools in anticipation that the EDL will complement the List of Essential Medicines and enhance its impact.
The WHO Public Health Emergency Advisor, Alexander Chimbaru said the EDL was developed following the increased recognition of the importance of diagnostic testing in healthcare in achieving Universal Health Coverage in many Countries.
He further explained that the Essential Diagnostic List which was first published in 2018 should be available at every point of care as a guidance document for Countries to create their own National list based on their local context and needs.