The foundation of any society is not built within the four walls of a country’s national assembly alone but on the wellbeing of the men and women that constitute the lawmaking process. That America, as well as other European countries, is where they are today is not because of the power of its currency but because of the high number of health workers and community development experts that have peopled that sector. That Nigeria is where it is today in community health and development owes to the large apathy of the various governments to overhaul the community health sector with both medical and community development experts. If the maintenance of the proverbial axiom, “health is wealth” is something that has raised the lives of many above the expected death rate stipulated by the different agencies under the United Nation, community health then should be a concern for both the Nigerian government and every Nigerian citizen.Nigerians living in the rural areas of the different part of the country suffers neglect from the policies of government, especially at the local level. Local government authorities have failed to deliver quality life for people. Local communities have become a host to wastes from the city. Accessibility to pipe borne water is becoming an old song on lips of rural settlers. And more, lack of lack of health education has endangered the survival of the rural specie in these parts. The aftermath of this irresponsibility on the part of the government and the inability of the people themselves to chart a clean living have resulted to increasing number of death rate in Nigeria. Women and children bear the brunt the most in this collective irresponsibility. As at the time of writing this report, the Infant Mortality Rate (IMR) as recorded by the demography of the United Nations scored Nigeria low on providing the apparatus for community health and development to thrive with an IMR of 12.67. The overall percentage of death rate stands at forty-two percent. Today, Nigeria has the sixth largest cholera burden in the world.
Another challenge that confronts rural folks, apart from the accessibility to pipe borne water, is the unwillingness of the people to give in to the advice and preventive measures of the few medical and health educators on field. Religion and other socio-cultural binoculars have been seen as the reason for this defiance. In Niger State, Nigeria during the mass vaccination of children against polio and other deadly diseases many locals refused the health workers access to their village and wards. The reason for this may lie on the failures of appropriate authority to set the ground for the work to succeed. Community development service experts were undermined. In some other parts of the north, Non Governmental Organizations and local authorities sent facilitators to the field to prepare the minds of the natives, through theatre performance, on why they should hearken to the health educators. This particular act of foresight helped the congealed reasoning of the locals to take the vaccine.
To achieve good health community health services strongly emphasize prevention, early intervention, rehabilitation and education, in addition to direct care.
Activities that a community health (development) service may be involved in include: Health promotion and education, case management, advocacy and intervention, creating collaborative relationships with industry, government, hospitals and other health services. Community health services are an important part of the health sector. They are vital in helping to create and maintain well-being and good health, particularly in those who are least able to pay. They are about long-term effort that reflects and implements the principles of empowerment, access for marginalized groups, community partnership, and client focused and integrated multi-disciplinary services. Attempts by various agencies to remove them and their Siamese, community development professionals from health works have led to various breakdown of understanding between the local people and the health instructors.
Truth is, the inaccessibility to information from the different media has disadvantaged the indigenous people towards understanding the mechanics and challenges to modern world. Community people, as it seem, would maintain the status quo concerning their health unless they are conditioned by government machineries to have a rethink on the suicide mission which their cultural and socio-religious consciousness is gearing them towards.