The Community Health Practitioners Board of Nigeria was established by Decree 61 of 1992. The Decree was signed by the former President of Nigeria 1.B. Babangida on 24th of November 1992.
Although the legal instrument establishing the Board had been in existence since 1992, the Board was constituted and inaugurated in December 2000. The establishment of the Board was informed by the need to regulate Community Health Practice, which was consequent upon creation of a group; of health workers (Community Health Officers, Community Health Extension Workers and Junior Community Health Extension Workers) whose training started in 1978. These health professionals were to serve in hitherto under-served and rural communities where the Federal Government constructed Basic Health Clinics, Primary Health Centers and Comprehensive Health Centers.
From inception of the training programme to date, 115,491 Community Health Practitioners have been produced. Most of them serving in Primary Health facilities spread across the country.
Before the inauguration of the Board, the Basic Health Services Scheme Coordinating Unit and Training and Manpower Development Division, both of the Federal Ministry of health had at one time or the other performed both the training and regulatory functions.
The present Governing Board is composed of 13 members headed Alhaji M. I Yahaya
Presently, the Board has its head office at Plot 379, EFAB Estate Road, Gwarinpa I, by Skye Bank, Jabi District, Abuja, FCT.
STATUTORY FUNCTIONS OF THE BOARD:
In accordance with the enabling law that created the Board, it is to perform the following functions:
- Determining what standards of knowledge and skills to be attained by persons seeking to become members of the profession of Community Health and improving the standard from time to time.
- The establishment and maintenance of a register of persons registered as members of the profession
- Conducting Examination in the profession and awarding Certificates of Diploma to successful candidates and prescribe fees to be paid in respect thereof.
- Indexing of trainees for various Community Health Practice Courses.
- Inspection of schools and institutions where Community Health Practitioners are trained for the purpose of accreditation of Community Health programmmes.
- Accreditation of schools and courses.
- Development of training curriculum for Community Health Practitioners.
- Preparation of printing, and sales of Standing Orders, curriculum and other relevant publications.
- Organize and conduct studies seminars and workshop to upgrade knowledge and skills of Community Health practitioners.
- Regulation of the profession and maintenance of discipline among members of the profession.
- To collect monies (revenue and subventions) including examination fees, indexing fees, registration and licensing of members and incur expenditure for the purpose of execution of functions enumerated under the Decree establishing the Board.
The Board has been able to establish partnership and linkages with several international organizations/partners and governmental institutions that have ensured good working relationship in promoting the development of Community Health Practitioners in the country. To this end, the Board has record increased patronage by International partners/Organizations. Some of these organizations/partners include:
- Association for Reproductive and Family Health (ARFH),
- Centre for Integrated Health Projects (Cl HP)
- USAID - FHi3601
- Institute of Human Virology (IHVN),
- Save the Children International (SCI),
- Population council,
- Various Depts of FMOH,
- Women 4 Health,
- PRINN-MNCH, and West African Health Organization (WAHO) etc