Cancer control funding in Nigeria: A case for universal health coverage

Kingsley Ndoh*, Aliko Ahmed, Robert Yates, Isaac Adewole, Zainab Bagudu-Shinkafi, Folakemi Odedina, Gafar Alawode, Samuel Alabi

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)


    Nigeria's health spending per capita remains relatively low, with an out-of-pocket expenditure on health estimated at three-quarters of the nation's health expenditure in 2018. A large percentage of the population cannot afford—and have limited access to—cancer treatment services. Our study was aimed at analyzing all cancer funding-related policies from 2010 to 2020. We used qualitative methods to contextualize the challenges of funding cancer control, and recommend steps in policy implementation needed to achieve universal health coverage (UHC) for cancer care in Nigeria. We found that cancer control is grossly underfunded, with a glaring lack of political will identified by most participants as the root cause of underfunding. Recommendations by the participants included mandatory enrollment in health insurance schemes, encouraging public-private partnerships and advocacy for increased taxation to democratize access to treatment. Additionally, channeling a portion of tax revenues from tobacco sales to cancer will reduce catastrophic health spending and move Nigeria closer toward achieving UHC for cancer.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number100335
    JournalJournal of Cancer Policy
    Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022

    Bibliographical note

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2022 Elsevier Ltd


    • Cancer control funding
    • Health financing
    • Nigeria cancer control
    • Nigeria cancer policy
    • Universal health coverage for cancer


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