Community Collectives and Citizens led Action Against COVID-19 Project (COMCOVID) has taken off in Nigeria. The project is being implemented as a part of Citizen’s Action and Accountability for COVID-19 (CAAVID) project led by African Health Budget Network (AHBN) in partnership with Centre for Health Sciences Training, Research and Development (CHESTRAD).
With funding support from the MacArthur Foundation. The project will be piloted in three Southwest States namely Lagos, Osun and Oyo.
Implementation of COMCOVID activities will be coordinated by CHESTRAD; a global, non-state, not-for-profit social enterprise organization registered as a corporate limited Guarantee in Nigeria. CHESTRAD’s Programme Officer Miss Heritage Oni confirmed that COMCOVID activities will be implemented for initial period of 18-months.
The project will engage stakeholders across the three states in through citizens led action on access to COVID-19 testing, treatment and vaccination. Project activities will further build on efforts at sub-national platforms towards effective responses to COVID-19 infodemic; vaccine hesitancy as well as access to vaccination and essential life-saving immunization.
COMCOVID activities will deploy advocacies and policy dialogues to promote integration of COVID19 interventions into Public Health Care (PHC) systems and promote a robust platform for epidemic preparedness and response in the three focal states.
The comprehensive goals of the project are to expand the coverage of COVID19 interventions and support vaccine introduction through citizen’s action, infodemic management and integrated PHC policy development as well as engaging and influencing policy actions with respect to accountability by impacting the role of media including social media influencers towards dispelling misinformation on COVID-19 vaccines.
Implementation of COMCOVID activities is expected to contribute to improved citizen’s action against COVID-19; support infodemic management to reduce vaccine hesitancy and support vaccine roll out; engagement with policy actions towards integrating COVID-19 response into national and sub-national PHC systems; strengthening of accountability for COVID-19 interventions; and put in place a broadly accessible learning hubs to support not only wider access but sustained actions.
COMCOVID implementation will also draw useful lessons from polio campaigns, HIV and previous immunizations efforts which buttress the far-reaching significance of citizen’s action and PHC systems integration in entrenching sustainability of interventions.
It will focus on critical areas of concern and enhance the prospects of cascading its outcomes into a broader citizens led actions for addressing vaccine hesitancy, infodemic management and accountability.
COMCOVID activities will deliver citizens’ hubs in some local government areas across the three pilot states towards expanding community reach and strengthen collaborative action across participating citizen’s platforms.
Four citizens’ hubs will be set up in Osun State with each in Ife Central, Ife South, Ilesa East and Oriade Local Government Areas. The four hubs in Lagos State are to be sited in Epe, Eti-Osa, Lagos Island and Lagos Mainland Local Government Areas. The two hubs in Oyo state are to be located in Ibadan South West and Ibadan North Local Government Areas.