Monrovia – Sister Aide Liberia in partnership with the Health Association of Liberia and Civil Society Organizations has called for speedy passage of the revised public health bill into law by the Liberian Senate.
By Francis G. Boayue
Sister Aide Liberia (SALI) Inc., a national Non-for-Profit organization and its partners, over the weekend, concluded a one-day Public Health Policy Dialogue on the speedy passage of the draft Public Health bill into legislation.
The dialogue, titled “Advancing a Framework for Public Health Delivery in Liberia”, an initiative funded by Kvinna till Kvinna and implemented by SALI with an aim to “strengthen synergies and arouse diverse stakeholders and present a unified voice to lawmakers as well as the general public regarding the urgent need to pass the draft public health law”.
Addressing the media at the end of the one-day strategic retreat on the draft health law in Paynesville City on Friday, May 12, 2023, twenty heads of Civil Society Organizations, women’s groups, and different university regulatory bodies, and all health Associations Leaderships in the country jointly signed a resolution requesting the Liberian Senate’s concurrence with the House of Representatives to pass the revised public health bill # 23 into law.
Mr. Theophilus Tamab Fayiah of the Liberia National Physician Assistance Association, speaking on behalf of the group, said the Senate Committee on health and Judiciary urgently need to facilitate the process to ensure the revised public health bill into law.
“Our unified call on the Senate to pass the bill into the law is grounded in the clarion cry of the public for improved public health delivery system across the country and is part of an ongoing project that is being implemented by Sister Aid Liberia”, he said.
He further said the public health law title 33 was first enacted as public health safety law before 1950 and in 1960, it was amended and re-enacted as title 31 Liberian Code of Laws, and twenty years later, the law was revised and re-enacted in 1976 as the public health law, title 33 Liberian Code of Laws Revised.
According to him, in light of a number of diseases between 2014-2015, the Ministry of Health decided to review and revise the law to make it fully compatible with contemporary health practices.
He disclosed that in 2020, President George M. Weah submitted the revised bill to the legislature which the plenary of the House of Representatives passed to the Senate, but the Senate join committee on health and Judiciary has not taken any action toward the passage of the bill.
“The bill when passed into law, will play a crucial role in addressing many public health challenges in the country which covers several crucial needs that include nuisances, mental health, drug padding, HIV/ AIDS, and others, highly risks further delay if it is not passed into law before the current sitting of the House of Senate ends in June 2023,” he said.