Endorsement of the Somaliland National Health Professions (Commission (NHPC)

Dr. Lula at the official launching of the NHPC Legal Act in Hargeisa, Somaliland

Dr. Lula J. Hussein is a Somali Canadian medical doctor who has been supporting the Somaliland National Health Professions Commission (NHPC) since March 2012 as a MIDA Health Northern Somalia (MIDA-FINNSOM) participant. The Somaliland NHPC is a statutory body with the mandate of regulating, accrediting, licensing professionals, and addressing health workforce issues in the country. Despite the challenges, the NHPC is a key platform for the overall promotion of health safety standards, high quality health care standards and a central body working on regulatory issues in the longer term.

The contribution that Dr. Lula, as a policy developer, has been providing not only to the beneficiary institution, but in general to the health sector in Somaliland as a whole is hard to quantify. In addition to developing the capacities of her local colleagues to bring about lasting changes to the medical sector, Dr. Lula has contributed to the development of a four year strategic plan, the passage by the legislature of proposed amendments to the Health Professions Act 19/2001, and the development of procedure manuals for NHPC.

On June 5th, 2013, Dr. Lula, as the Head of the NHPC, officially announced that the NHPC is opened for business. Dr. Lula, some few staff and some dedicated volunteers planned, prepared and organized a successful official launch of the institution and the Health Regulatory Act that was signed into law by the President of Somaliland HE Dr. Ahmed Mohamed Mohamoud on January 19th, 2013. The launch was well organized and highly attended. Invitations were sent to all NHPC stakeholders, health institutions, health care facilities, members of the House of Elders, members of Parliament with a special invitation to members of the Social Affairs Committee, line ministries, and influential community and religious leaders. The honorable Vice President HE Abdirahman Mohamed Saylici officially opened the launch of NHPC.

In her speech Dr. Lula thanked the participants; she talked in detail why NHPC is such an important factor in the provision of health services in Somaliland. Dr. Lula, furthermore, told the participants that NHPC’s mandate is all about protecting the public and raising the quality of the health care services, health training institutions as well as health professionals in Somaliland. Dr. Lula urged concerned stakeholders especially the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Higher Education as well as the Higher Education Commission to work with NHPC.

As a testament of the great job that Dr. Lula is doing at the Somaliland NHPC, MIDA has been asked by the Somalia Health Sector Committee to share with other international actors the best practices arising out of this success story and, above all, to keep on supporting the NHPC through Dr. Lula’s assignment. MIDA has just extended Dr. Lula’s contract in order to let her further contribute to the development of the health sector regulation in Somaliland whose framework is already serving as a role model for the development of the same sectors in Puntland and South Central Somalia.