FG, SFH, Catholic Relief Services to Commence Distribution of 5.4 Treated Mosquito Nets in Kaduna

By Uangbaoje Alex, Kaduna

The Federal Ministry of Health and Society for Family Health in partnership with Catholic Relief Services are set to commence the distribution of 5.4 million Insecticide Treated Mosquito Nets (ITNs) across 23 Local Government Areas in Kaduna State.

Kaduna State Health Educator officer, Maryam Kure, disclosed this at a one-day media orientation meeting aimed at securing media support to promote and provide adequate publicity for the campaigns.

She emphasized the need for the media to focus mainly on creating awareness on the use of Insecticide Treated Nets (ITNs).

Mrs. Kure, revealed that the household registration and distribution of the nets will commence on 7th July and end on 18 July, 2022.

SFH, Director Technical and Programs, Mr John Ocholi, who also solicits media partnership in educating the general public on the importance of putting the treated nets to use, revealed that the malaria prevention intervention in the saw 5.1 million nets distributed in 2019.

According to Omo-Eboh Mamudu, a representative of the National Malaria Elimination Program (NMEP) of the Federal Ministry of Health, malaria which is the world highest killer disease, need to be given adequate media attention to help save lives.

He explained that the objective of the ITN mass campaign is to ensure that every two persons per household in Kaduna receive a net which according to him will be distributed through a door-to-door approach across all LGAs in the State.

Mamudu, assured that even areas facing serious security challenges will get the nets as no one or places are left out of the campaigns, saying “we can find a way to get around it, our nets will get there.

“We have estimated the number of nets needed based on projections to the 2006 census figures”.

E4A-Mamaye Partners KADMAM to Accelerate Reduction of Maternal Mortality in Kaduna

By Uangbaoje Alex, Kaduna

As part of effort to reduce maternal mortality in Kaduna State, Evidence for Action (E4A) on Wednesday unveiled a new intervention program in Kaduna state known as “MamaYe”.

The program being implemented by ‘Options’ a Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) supported organization, aims to support accountability mechanism working around health sector in accelerating the reduction of maternal deaths in the state was unveiled during an inception meeting with Kaduna Maternal Accountability Mechanism (KADMAM).

Elkana Aliyu, State Advisor, E4A, in his presentation said the project is geared towards ensuring the best available health system data is used by the right people at the right time in the state.

He added that the project will also facilitates establishment and collaboration with multi-stakeholder accountability mechanism and equally support accountability mechanisms to transform data into easy-to-understand information.

The goal according to him is to achieve quality Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health (RMNCH) services for women and children in the state and Nigeria at large and other parts of Africa through a sustained accountability model that delivers prioritized Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health (MNCH) and Family Planning (FP) policy and financing.

Mr. Elkana, said the purpose of the meeting is to communicate E4A’s new investment approach, strategies, and anticipated outcomes to KADMAM and to also understand where KADMAM is in terms of its operations and sustainability of its interventions.

“E4A has strengthened accountability through a catalytic approach that supports advocates to forge stronger relationships with decision-makers, use and package evidence, and navigate political interests to enter and work within decision making spaces.

“This fosters active and inclusive participation of citizens in governance, with those most affected by poor public services influencing policy decisions. Where advocates are equipped with the right evidence at the right time, this contributes to increased resourcing for high-quality primary health care services, specifically maternal and newborn health (MNH) and family planning (FP).

“Our  Impact and Learning Study, case studies and advocates’ stories, show that the E4A’s accountability model delivers vital improvements in RMNCH services.  Under this reinvestment E4A will support coalitions to take on full ownership for this model, transitioning away from E4A’s support and expanding their ability to adapt to changes in context.” He noted.

He said through the MamaYe project, it is expected that a resilient State Level Accountability Mechanisms (SLAMs) actioning unique transition plans and advocating in support of priority issues (FP, MNCH, PHC) in target geographies, will be built.

And also an “Increased salience of gender-responsive approaches to RMNCH included in policy agendas and budgets of governments and health services in target geographies. E4A is a sustainable, African-led project, providing demand driven technical assistance to local partners.

“SLAMs access ‘seed funding’ through our flexible funding model, advocate peer support, and SLAMs transition plans. Training SLAMs to advocate for actions that are responsive to gender-based root causes of poor access and RMNCAH service provision. SLAMs diversify their governance and membership structures and integration of gender transformative approaches in Maternal and Perinatal Death Surveillance and Response (MPDSR) tools.”

Citizen Co-chair of KADMAM, Alhaji Mustapha Jumare, noted that the mechanism is fully ready and committed to work with the MamaYe project.

According to him, “we are quite privilege to have MamaYe engaged with us, we have noted some of our areas of weaknesses. We are so glad that it will strengthen the structural position of KADMAM in the midst of coalitions generally.

“I believe that we will work hard to meet up with their own terms so that we reduce the maternal mortality in Kaduna state because the entire concept is trying to reduce the maternal mortality in the 23 LGAs in Kaduna state, off cause KADMAM have been working on that.

“And now that we have an organization that’s here to support Kaduna state and is willing to work with KADMAM, we will ensure that membership of KADMAM works hard to see that maternal mortality is reduced in Kaduna state.”

Lab Scientists Decries Low Blood Donation in Nigeria……..appreciate donors for maintaining adequate supplies

Members of Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (AMLSN), Kaduna State Branch have decried the low blood donation in Nigeria.

The Scientists, said the importance of regular blood donation to health of people cannot not be overemphasized, thus the resolve to carry the campaigns to the streets and hospitals for increased blood donation.

Chairman of AMLSN, Comrade Taofeeq Babsalam, explained that “every June 14, countries around the world celebrate World Blood Donor Day (WBDD) and the event serves to raise awareness of the need for safe blood and blood products and to thank voluntary, unpaid blood donors for their life-saving gifts of blood.”

He, commended all members of the Association in  the State and urged regular donors and others to keep the world by regularly donating blood as it is  therapeutic for both the donors and the recipients.

“Today, the Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists, Kaduna State Branch is sincerely thanking all
voluntary donors for their selfless act of saving lives thereby keeping the world Beating.” He added .

Speaking further on the importance of blood donation to health, Babsalam said, “Some of the associated benefits of blood donation include: anti cancer benefits as it reduces iron
deposition, prevents haemochromatosis, healthy liver, stimulates blood cell production, a free blood Screening for infectious diseases, happier life as a result of saving lives etc.

“Today we are at St Gerald Hospital Kakuri Kaduna for our blood drive to support the emergency services
of the hospital for the good people of Kaduna State and the country at large, the choice of St Gerald Hospital is because of it strategic location and accessibility to victims of Road Traffic Accident and Disaster.

“Specific objectives of this year’s campaign are to: thank blood donors in the world and create wider public awareness of the need for regular blood donation; highlight the need for committed, year-round blood donation; Maintain adequate supplies and achieve universal and timely access to safe blood transfusion.

“Recognize and promote the values of voluntary blood donation in enhancing community solidarity and social cohesion, raise  awareness of the need for increased investment from governments to build a sustainable and resilient national blood system and increase collection from voluntary non-remunerated blood donors.”

Meanwhile, he said the COVID-19 pandemic took a toll on blood donation and availability with the  curve  flattening.

He therefore called on relevant government agencies to synergize with the association to ensure availability of safe blood for Nigerians.

Link Nutrition Reportage to Relevant Sectors to Stem Negative Indices – Group Task Journalists

By Uangbaoje Alex, Kaduna

Following low visibility of nutrition stories in the Nigeria media space, journalists have been tasked to link nutrition to other relevant sectors, such as agric, WASH, education, etc to reverse the negative indices of malnutrition.

The call was contained in a communique issued at the end of a 3-day capacity building of journalists for improved nutrition reportage and visibility organized by Civil Society -Scaling Up Nutrition in Nigeria (CS-SUNN).

According to the communique, there is need for journalists to improve their skills in understanding the art of writing compelling and impact driven nutrition stories.

They noted that the media are partners in progress in addressing the menace of malnutrition and therefore charged journalists to understand their roles and powers in changing the malnutrition indices in Nigeria

“Media practitioners should embrace a paradigm shift from event-based reporting to solutions journalism in the context of nutrition research. Journalists should be creative and innovative in their reportage of nutrition issues.

“The media should drive discussions around nutrition with all relevant stakeholders, stories from media practitioners on nutrition should be compelling and solutions based with in-depth research. The communique said.

The added that the “media should not concentrate on health pages and programs alone but look into other non-health related issues and link nutrition to them. Journalists should explore collaborative story development, cross border reporting with adequate scientific research and data analysis for greater development impact.

“Journalists should develop skills to monitor, track, analyse and report budgetary allocations for nutrition.”

They encouraged journalists to embark on field investigations on Community-based related interventions such as Community Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM) centres, etc and translate findings from the field to stories.

On issue of inadequate funding by the government which serves as a major driver of malnutrition the group urged government to improve investments for nutrition programs.

They task government to move from emergency treatment of malnutrition to preventive and provision of routine nutritional services.

The three-day media training was aimed at improving the understanding of the media on the impact of malnutrition, improving the media’s capacity for effective nutrition reporting and securing their commitment to write nutrition stories based on agreed nutrition themes.

The meeting was in line with CS-SUNN’s goal of building key partnerships with the media to magnify the voice for improved nutrition in Nigeria. It will ensure opportunities to raise awareness, build understanding, change perceptions, and motivate target audiences to act on nutrition issues to reverse the negative indices.

Participants were drawn from media platforms including; Television, Radio, Newspapers and Online from five (5) States of Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger, Kaduna and Kano including Abuja where CS-SUNN is currently implementing the Partnership for Improving Nigeria Nutrition Systems (PINNS) 2.0 project.

CS-SUNN Sharpen Journalists Capacity to tackle High Malnutrition Rate in Nigeria

By Uangbaoje Alex, Abuja

As part of effort to increase reportage of nutrition issues in Nigeria, Civil Society -Scaling Up Nutrition in Nigeria (CS-SUNN), has said it is important that capacity of journalists sharpened to help reduce the high rate of malnutrition in the country.

Executive Secretary (ES) of CS-SUNN, Sunday Okoronkwo, who noted this on Wednesday in Abuja, at a three days media training for journalists, with the theme: “Strengthening the Capacity of Journalists for Improved Nutrition Reportage and Visibility” aimed at improving their capacity for effective nutrition reporting, identified the media as critical stakeholders in fight against malnutrition.

He said despite the efforts by the media, there is still the need for them to do more in projecting in issues of malnutrition to the front burner.

“The media is one of our critical partners, without them we won’t be able to achieve our objectives that we have signed up to do in trying to bring malnutrition to it’s barest minimum.

“I must use this opportunity to commend you in your work with us in the last 6 to 7 years, it has been a fruitful one, you have contributed immensely to contributed to magnifying some of the issues and I tell you the drop of the wasting rate between 2018 and 2020, the media played a critical role in making it happen, I must commend us.” He noted.

The ES, added that “We see this training as a way of supporting the media to get the needed information, data and statistics that they would need to write stories that would contribute more to the fight against malnutrition.

“I say so because there is still a lot more work to be done, because if you look at our stunting rate, it is still very high, so we still need to do more. I believe that your pen is mightier than the sword, the truth is that holding government and every other stakeholders accountable is one thing that we most all do and our role is to ensure there’s reduction in malnutrition in the country.”

On her part, the Communication Officer of CS-SUNN, Lilian Okafor, stated that the strengthening the capacity of journalists became imperative because all the stakeholders working to ensure an end to malnutrition are struggling to find a way out because of the low level of reportage.

“Today more than ever, nutrition advocates including CS-SUNN struggle to find ways to raise awareness,
build understanding, change perceptions, and motivate target audiences to act on nutrition issues to reverse the negative indices.” She said.

She noted that in best pathway to quickly disseminate information, increase understanding, build momentum, and unify support for nutrition is to engage the media.

“It is however important to build the capacity of the media to bring to the fore, issues relating to nutrition while bringing to limelight funding gaps and placing nutrition in the front burners of the agenda of policy makers to improve
interventions and funding for nutrition.

“Also, the informative, enlightenment,
watch dogging and agenda-setting roles of the Media cannot be overemphasized.

“It is therefore in line with CS-SUNN’s goal of building key partnerships especially with the media to magnify the voice for improved nutrition in Nigeria, that the alliance organized this media training aimed at; improving the understanding of media practitioners on the impacts of malnutrition, improving
the media’s capacity for effective nutrition reporting and securing their commitment to write nutrition
stories based on agreed nutrition themes”. She added.

Medical Director calls for effective first aid for accident victims, says 41,709 die in Accident recently

The Medical Director, St. Gerald’s Catholic Hospital Kaduna, Dr. Shurkuk Clestus Bako, has fingered timely and effective first aid administering on accident victims as Panacea for accident deaths in Nigeria.

Delivering a talk on First Aid for Accident Victims on Saturday in Kaduna at the Media Health Day organised by Catholic Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria (CAMPANIA) Kaduna State Chapter, Shurkuk maintained that” data from Federal Road Safety and National Bureau for statistics says 41, 709 persons died in Nigeria between 2013 and 2020 in road accidents.”

He said World Health Organization predicts 40% increase in global death due to injuries by 2030.

Shurkuk revealed that to reduce accident deaths, Nigerians must ensure safe driving, and calling for help and rushing patients to health facilities, assessment of patients, checking for obstruction in the mouth or throat, performing CPR if there is no pulse and keeping patient in recovery position.

In his welcome address, the Chaplain Catholic Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria (CAMPAN) Kaduna State Chapter, Reverend Father Stephen Onyema who commended Participants for coming, reemphasize the essence of healthy living, thanking the National Eye Centre, St. Gerald’s Catholic Hospital and Sky View Scan and Laboratory for the support in ensuring that the Media Health Day is a success.

Also speaking, the Chairman Catholic Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria Kaduna State Chapter Comrade Nicholas Dekera maintained that the awareness for health is key in eliminating illness orchestrated poverty and ensuring safer society.

Dekera Stressed that members must be more conscious of Health issues and must embark on regular medical check-up to keep the family safe.

578 Million People Might Become Daibetic By 2030, Says Medical Expert

No fewer than 578 million people worldwide might become diabetic by the year 2023 if necessary measures are not taken to control the rising rate of diabetic patients.

The Chief Medical Director, National Eye Centre represented by Dr. Murtala Umar, a senior Consultant and Eye expert from the National Eye centre stated this while making a presentation on the topic;.”Diabetes and the Eye” during a media health day organized by the Catholic Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria (CAMPAN) in Kaduna.

Dr. Umar pointed out that a diabetic patient could become blind eventually if not treated at early stages of discovery, adding that although the body cannot function effectively without sugar but warns that poorly controlled sugar level could affect several organs of the body and when it affects the eye could result into blindness.

He disclosed that the current statistics which varies from the to time has it that 463 adults are presently diabetic, adding that, ” it has the tendencies of increasing to 578 million globally by 2030 if unchecked.

“Consistent high sugar level damages blood vessels and other organs, eg the kidney, heart, eye, liver, and brain but the eye shows quick damage which is a window to the brain.

“Retina can be affected by diabetes which could lead to blindness. Poorly controlled diabetes lead to cataract and other eye challenges. Watery eyes and discharges could be as a result of diabetes complications”.

Dr. Umar further disclosed that million of deaths are directly attributed to diabetes each year, adding that both the number of cases and the prevalence of diabetes have been steadily increasing over the past few decades.

As part of measures to the increasing rate of diabetes amongst people, he advocate regular creation of awareness, sensitization on effective working of the pancreas, consumption of more of vegetables, chicken and fish and avoidance of excessive consumption of sugar or food with too much of sugar content

Negligence: Gbajabiamila charges health workers on ethics, medical lawJanuary 30, 2022 Muhammad Tanko Shittu

Speaker of the House Representatives Femi Gbajabiamila, Saturday, charged health workers to maintain the culture of due diligence in patient’s management within the confine of ethical and legal perspective.

Speaker Gbajabiamila made the call while declaring opening a 3-day training programme for health workers themed; “Bio-Ethics and medical law,” in Jos, the Plateau state.

Represented by his Aaviser on health matters, Doctor Femi Aworinde, the speaker said with the advent of Covid-19, reports of negligence have escalated with many health workers abdicating their responsibilities out of fear of contracting the virus.

“This has tremendously affected the quality of care provided and has predictably resulted in increased morbidity rates in our hospitals, mostly as a result of medical conditions other than the covid-19 disease,” he said.

Gbajabiamila said the training is aimed at, “restarting the culture of due diligence in patient’s management and ensuring that health professionals leave with a refreshed understanding of the ethical and legal perspective to practice.”

In his remark, the minister of health, Doctor Osagie Ehanire, represented by the acting Medical Director of the Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH), Doctor Pokop Bipwada, while appreciating the Speaker, said the initiative was a complementary and collaborative approached aim at strengthening the health care system.

Also speaking, President of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), Professor Innocent Ujah, said Gbajabiamila is greatly concerned about the health sector in the country.

“He has positive passion for healthcare delivery in this country and we need to support him” he said.

The NMA President decried high level of brain drained in the Nigerian’s health sector.

“Last month about 100 consultants have to leave this country for greener pastures,” he said.


Rivers to punish distributors of unhygienic drinking water

The Rivers State Government has warned that any distributor found engaging in acts capable of compromising the quality of drinking water being served to the public would be punished.

The state Commissioner for Water Resources and Rural Development, Dr Tamunosisi Gogo-Jaja, made the warning while speaking at the 2021 Global Hand Washing Day and the launching of a campaign against exposure of bottled and sachet water to sunlight in Port Harcourt.

Gogo-Jaja specifically warned against exposure of sachet and bottled water to sunlight, saying it may cause cancer, leukaemia and it is capable of damaging other body tissues.

He urged distributors to ensure that their trucks were always covered to protect the water from sunlight.

“Some of us may not understand that when you expose water that is contained in sachet and bottle or plastic bottle, the heat may be injurious. What is used in the production of sachet and plastic water is called polymas,” he stated, adding that from polymas there are component chemicals that make up the sachet and the plastic bottle.

The commissioner said, “Water does not expire but the container does expire. So when you expose that plastic or sachet to sunlight, its speeds up the expiration of that content. So, when you drink contaminated water it contributes to stunted growth, dull brains and other defects. The Rivers State Government insists that any drinking water served in this state must be of quality and we have our standards.”

Gogo-Jaja stressed the need for regular washing of hands especially because the COVID-19 pandemic was still in existence.

“This is to emphasise the importance of handwashing. If you ask, as Africans, handwashing has been our tradition. To wash off germs from our hands, we need to use soap and water. And it has been established that washing our hands with soap and water protects us; to a reasonable extent about 40 per cent against diseases.

He continued, “All of us would also know that during the pandemic that washing of hands with water and soap contributed a lot in the fight against COVID-19.

“We have fought against COVID-19. The world is moving forward. This year’s theme, ‘Our future is in our hands’, is to remind us that to move forward, we must imbibe and inculcate in our children the attitude of washing our hands with soap and water.”

Source: punch

COVID-19: FG removes India from restricted countries’ list

The Federal Government has lifted the ban placed on flights coming into the country from India.

The government had banned passengers, who visited India, Brazil, South Africa, and Turkey in the last 14 days from entering the country as part of precautionary measures to contain the virus in the country.

But in the new travel protocol released on Sunday, the Chairman, Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, indicated that the ban placed on passengers from India has been lifted.

The reviewed protocol took effect from September 14, 2021.

However, the sanctions placed on airlines that convey passengers from restricted countries and travellers who are Non-Nigerians remain.

Mustapha said, “Non-Nigerian passport holders and non-residents who visited Brazil, Turkey or South Africa within 14 days preceding travel to Nigeria, shall be denied entry into Nigeria. This regulation, however, does not apply to passengers who transited through these countries.

“Airlines who fail to comply shall mandatorily pay a penalty of $3,500 defaulting passenger; and non-Nigerians will be denied entry and returned to the country of embarkation at cost to the Airline; Nigerians and those with a permanent resident permit who visited Brazil, Turkey, and South Africa within 14 days preceding travel to Nigeria shall be made to undergo seven days of mandatory quarantine in a Government approved facility at the point-of-entry city and at cost to the passenger.

“The following conditions shall apply to such passengers: Within 24 hours of arrival shall take a COVID-19 PCR test;
ii. If Positive, the passenger shall be admitted within a government-approved treatment centre, in line with national treatment protocols; and
iii. If Negative, the Passenger shall continue to remain in quarantine and made to undergo a repeat PCR test on Day-7 of their quarantine.

“False declaration: passenger(s) who provided false or misleading contact information will be liable to prosecution; and person(s) who willfully disregard or refuse to comply with directions of Port-Health staff, security agencies or evade quarantine shall be prosecuted in accordance with the law

“This protocol comes into effect from 14th September 2021.”

He said before departure from exit country, passengers must perform a COVID-19 PCR test not more than three days before boarding, adding that the PCR tests done more than 72 hours before departure are not valid and persons will not be allowed to board.

The PSC chairman stressed that airlines have been directed not to board passengers with non-PCR COVID-19 tests (such as antigen/or antibody tests), a positive COVID-19 PCR test result, or tests performed beyond 72 hours of boarding.

He added, “Airlines that board passengers without any of the TWO documents (a negative COVID-19 PCR test done not more than 72 hours prior to boarding and a Permit to Travel Certificate/QR code), shall be sanctioned as follows: passengers, who are Non-Nigerians, will be refused entry and returned to the point of embarkation at a cost to the airline;

“Passengers who are Nigerians or holders of a permanent resident permit will be allowed entry but subjected to the procedure outlined in Section D.

“In addition, passengers arriving with forged (fake) COVID-19 PCR results shall be referred for prosecution; airlines shall be fined $3,500 per passenger.”

He said all passengers arriving in Nigeria will be required to go through the routine Port Health screening and present electronic or print-out evidence of pre-boarding COVID-19 PCR test and the Permit to Travel Certificate/QR Code as well as Present their international passports for clearance through the Nigerian Immigration Service System’s Migrants Identification Data Analysis System.S

Source: Punch