Certificate of standard
By Funmilayo Olagunju
Health is often described as wealth to depict its pricelessness. Health facilities are established by individuals, corporate entities, non-governmental organizations or government agencies.
By virtue of National Health Act, a health establishment, health agency or health technology shall not be established, constructed or acquired without a certificate of standard. In the same vein, health services shall not be prescribed without the certificate of standard.
Section 13 specifically provides:
without being in possession of a certificate of Standards, a person, entity, government or organization shall not-
(a) establish, construct, modify or acquire a health establishment, health agency or health technology:
(b) increase the number of beds in, or acquire prescribed health technology at a health establishment or health agency:
(c) provide prescribed health services; or
(d) continue to operate a health establishment health agency or health technology after the expiration of 24 months from the date this Act took effect.
Section 64 of the National Health Act which is the interpretation section defines Health Agency and health establishment among others.
“Health Agency” means any person or entity other than a health establishment-
(a) whose business involves the supply of health care personnel to users or health establishments;
(b) who employs health care personnel for the purpose of providing health services or
(c) who procures health care personnel or health services for the benefit of a user, and includes a temporary employment service involving health workers or health care providers.
“Health establishment” means the whole or part of a public or private institution, facility, building or place, whether for profit or not that is operated or designed to provide inpatient or outpatient treatment diagnostic or therapeutic intervento nursing. rehabilitative,.
The Certificate of Standards may be obtained by application in prescribed manner from the appropriate body of government where the facility is located.
By the provision of section 14 of the Act, any person, entity, government or organisation who performs any act which requires a certificate of standards without having the certificate commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine of not less than N500,000.00 or, in the case of an individual, to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 2 years or both.
Any health agency, health establishment or health technology that operates without a certificate of standards is at the risk of fine and or imprisonment.
“For there is a proper time and procedure for every matter…”
Ecclesiastes 8:6 (NIV)