Saturday, 1 February 2020

CRSG marks World Neglected Tropical Disease Day, Seeks improved awareness on killer diseases

Simon Odey|1 February 2020 

Worried about the prevalence of Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) in Africa and by extension, Cross River Health experts have kickstarted an aggressive sensitization and deworming exercise to different schools in communities endemic for soil transmitted ailments.

The deworming elimination plan is geared towards ensuring a worm free Cross River State where its children can grow properly without any health interferances resulting from worm infestation.

Cross River State Director General, Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr. Janet Ekpenyong speaking at the flagoff of the deworming exercise in Okonyong, Odukpani Local Government Area of the State used the occasion to advocate for a good personal hygiene through regular hand washing exercise.

The DG who lamented the negligence to sensitize members of the general public and prioritize the various diseases predominant in the Tropics, asked for more models to be adopted to create an enlightenment on the various Tropical diseases especially in the rural areas with resulting effects being Anaemia, Blindness and some other life threatening diseases.

"Aside Malaria, HIV/AIDS ant Tuberculosis there is very little that has been done to sensitize
Our people on the various diseases that are predominant to us in this part of the world,some of them are Ascariasis (Roundworm), schistosomiasis (fresh water parasitic worms), Chagas (triatomine bug), sleeping sickness among others,our people should be taught on how to  prevent the infestation of some of these worms and bugs that result into life threateningly diseases by ensuring proper sanitation and good personal hygiene.

She further appreciated the efforts of the state government in the provision of drugs, equipping of the various Health facilities across the state and various incentives to workers which have spurred them to quality and effective service delivery to the citizenry.

"I must thanks the effort of our Pro Health governor, senator Professor Ben Ayade on his numerous contributions to the health sector,most of our facilities across the 18 LGA's are well equipped with full strength manpower who are well motivated and poised to good and effective services to  members of the public".

The Commissioner for Health, Dr Betta Edu earlier disclosed that 4 out of the other NTDs are relative to the Cross River terrane, hence the need to create more awareness to the public.

Some of the diseases mentioned include, lymphatic filariasis, onchocerciasis schistosomiasis, lumbricoides (hookworm).

She further disclosed that the government has taken various approaches including the School base deworming exercise and Community base deworming exercise  which is done yearly with school teachers and community health mobilizers as contact point to the targeted audience.

The day was marked with awareness on the causes, symptoms and effects of various Neglected Tropical Diseases.  Also discussed were Lassa fever and Coronna virus which has become a global pandemonium.

Neglected Tropical Disease meeting was first held in 2007 by the World Health Organization with a commitment to donate large quantities of effective high quality medicines to suppress common tropical parasitic and bacteria infections.    

Each year, the event is marked locally in Cross River State with various activities including hand wash sensitization exercise, deworming in schools, churches, and public places of interest.

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