The International Press Center, IPC is set to launch a six-month Media-in-Health-Care-Accountability Project which is aimed at building a generation of investigative health reporters.
The project which will commence in December seeks to enhance the capacity of the media and younger generation journalists to serve as effective catalysts of fundamental health care reforms.
Announcing the project which is supported by the US Consulate-General, Lagos-Nigeria, Executive Director of IPC, Mr. Lanre Arogundade said that, the project will also monitor government response and utilization of funds allocated to fighting the COVID-19 pandemic and other health emergencies.
Mr. Arogundade added that, “It is all about upping the ante of the constitutional obligation imposed on the media to monitor governance and hold government accountable to the people; and it is in that context that the project will seek to assist journalists to ensure health care sector accountability and service delivery because of the failures that Covid-19 have laid bare.”
In a press statement detailing the purpose of the project, IPC disclosed that “the project will start with a one-month baseline assessment exercise of current trends in media reporting of health care issues, the outcome of which shall be used to design the capacity building programs to be organized in the later part of the project. The outcomes will also be used to engage with media managers on the need to improve health sector reporting.
“The capacity building program shall target young and mid-career journalists from the print, online and broadcast media outlets in the three geopolitical zones of South West, South South and South East.
“The participants will be journalists who are committed to reporting issues of governance, accountability and transparency in the health sector and are willing to help provide solutions to identified problems.
“The selection of the Journalists shall therefore be competitive and there will be a call for expression of interest on IPC’s website (www.ipcng.org) and the organization’s social media platforms,” the statement added.
Mr. Arogundade said that this is the first phase of MeHCA-P and expresses the hope that other development partners and donors would partner with IPC on the project so it could benefit many more journalists across the country.
“We hope we would have the funding support to produce the next generation health care investigative reporters in each local government, each state and each geo-political zone of Nigeria,” he added.