Headline Health News Nigeria

kwara govt to tackle disease outbreak

Lack of hygiene and certain play habits of school-aged children such as swimming or fishing in infested water make them especially vulnerable to infection

About 804,219 school aged children and 184,289 adults are at risk of schistosomiasis, which is endemic in 15 LGAs of Kwara State.

National Coordinator of the Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs), Dr Ne Akpan issued the figures at the flag off of the deworming exercise for  beneficiaries of the National Home-Grown School Feeding Programme in Ilorin, Kwara State.

Dr Akpan, who was represented by Dr Adewale Ayodeji, said the NTDs “are an ever-growing list of infections” that predominate in the tropics and are neglected in comparison with other public health diseases, such as malaria, tuberculosis and HIV-AIDS.

He said 63 wards in 11 Local Governments classified as highly- and moderately-endemic with schistosomiasis, will be treated with free, safe and effective PZQ 600mg donated to the State through the Federal Ministry of Health, using a calibrated dose pole.

In her remarks, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar-Farouq, said the event is one of the cluster programmes  of the National Social Investment Programme ( NSIP), which is under the supervision of her Ministry.

Also speaking,  Kwara State Coordinator of the NTDs,  Christiana Bamgboye, said commencement of the exercise will include distribution of medicines to primary school children across the state.

She said the programme is in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Federal Ministry of Health, Kwara State ministry of Health, and Sightsavers among others.

Reporting by Lawrence Afolabi; Editing by Fany Olumoye, Omotola Oguneye and Tony Okerafor