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Monica_55905 Jul 15

Nigeria Focus: Energy for Healthcare

Nigeria Focus: Energy for Healthcare image
COVID-19 has left healthcare systems struggling around the world. With the pandemic spreading through Africa, where health services are most fragile, life-saving energy access is crucial. Our panellists looked at how Nigeria is dealing with this and considered role energy investors and solution providers can have alongside Governmental responses.
As moderator Haruperi Mumbengegwi, Legal Counsel, African Legal Support Facility, highlights COVID-19 has left healthcare systems struggling around the world. With the pandemic spreading through Africa, where health services are most fragile, life-saving energy access is crucial.  Our panellists looked at how Nigeria is dealing with this and considered role energy investors and solution providers can have alongside Governmental responses. As Mark Caratto, Acting Coordinator, Power Africa says ‘this was a crisis before it was a crisis’ but perhaps COVID-19 has further augmented the perceived importance of energy for healthcare. 

Ahmad Salihijo, Managing Director of the Rural Electrification Agency highlighted the important work the REA has been doing in response to the Pandemic, the REA has been providing power to hospitals, healthcare facilities, and teaching hospitals. Across Abuja, Lagos and the wider Ogun state. This includes deploying energy systems to power isolation centres and supporting communities. Given the short timeframe in which the REA has to operate this is extremely impressive.   

We were also privileged to receive insight from Dimitrios Triantafyllopoulos, Project Director, METKA providing a private sector perspective, METKA’s work in Nigeria, and the value of shared learning between similar schemes such as METKA’s university training centre energy projects. 

It is clear that a successful response will take great collaboration between various organisations and this broadcast is no different.  As Mark outlines, Power Africa, The REA, METKA, Homer Energy and the Africa Legal Support Facility have been working together on various energy for healthcare initiatives.  It is also apparent that prioritisation of resources is critical. In recent months Power Africa has redirected €3.5m towards electricity access to support the delivery of healthcare services and through partners have connected more than 700 healthcare facilities to grid power ensuring reliable sources of power to hospitals, testing centres, isolation centres and other facilities.

From a more technical perspective Peter Lilienthal, CEO, Homer Energy, explains how important accurate data is critical to an effective response, as accurate data enables the development and design effective healthcare solutions, Homer Energy’s Powering Health Application has been rebuffed in collaboration with the world bank to jumpstart hybrid system designs.

Takeaways:

 
  • Collaboration of organisations is essential in an effective energy for healthcare response, this is perhaps best encapsulated by our panellists collaborations over the past months. 
  • Accurate Data is required as a prerequisite to implanting suitable energy projects effectively. Having complete data sets or an understanding of how to work effectively with incomplete date enables the most accurate technical solutions to be designed and implemented. 
  • Methods of streamlining and accelerating processes to aid a faster response must be considered, to ensure all projects have the fastest and greatest impact on the people being served. It must be a person centred response.