Nigeria’s investment in health, education ranks 171 in global study

A global study on countries’ investments in health care and education undertaken by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington, United States, has ranked Nigeria 171 out of 195 countries sampled.

Titled, “Measuring human capital: A Systematic Analysis of 195 Countries and Territories, 1990 to 2016”, the study was published this month in the international medical journal, The Lancet.

According to the researchers, the study focuses on the number of productive years an individual in each country can be expected to work between the ages of 20 to 64, taking into account years of schooling, learning in school, and functional health.

In arriving at their result, researchers said their calculation was based on systematic analysis of 2,522 surveys and censuses providing data on years of schooling; testing scores on language, math, and science; and health levels related to economic productivity.

In the report, Nigeria placed just behind the Democratic Republic of the Congo (170th) and just ahead of Zambia (172nd). The United States ranked 27th; and South Africa, 144th.

The study places Finland at the top with Turkey showing the most dramatic increase in human capital; and China, Thailand, Singapore, and Vietnam with notable improvements.

“Nigeria’s ranking of 171st in 2016 represents a drop from its 1990 ranking of 155th. It comes from having five years of expected human capital, measured as the number of years a person can be expected to work in the years of peak productivity, taking into account life expectancy, functional health, years of schooling, and learning.

“Overall, Nigeria’s residents had 36 out of a possible 45 years of life between the ages of 20 and 64; expected educational attainment of nine years out of a possible of 18 years in school; and a learning score of 66 and a functional health score of 45, both out of 100.

Learning is based on average student scores on internationally comparable tests.

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