Ogun seeks reduction in death of sickle cell children under five years

Ogun state government is seeking reduction in sickle cell death through a low cost diagnosis and treatment of the disease especially for under- 5 children in the state.

Commissioner for Health, Dr. Tomi Coker stated this known while declaring open a 2-Day Training of Health Workers on Comprehensive Newborn Screening Programme (CNBSP) for Sickle Cell Disorders organized by the ministry in  Abeokuta.

She explained that Nigeria has the highest number of cases of sickle cell disease in the world, describing the disease as one of the leading causes of infant deaths in the country.

Coker said that 70% of under-5 deaths from the disease could be prevented with a low-cost diagnostic and treatment plan, noting that the Dapo Abiodun led government investment in the health sector will contribute to a significant reduction in the burden of disorders in sickle cell disease.

She said “An estimated 150,000 babies are born annually in Nigeria with sickle cell disease. It is a heredity disorder that leads to death of 70%-90% infants before the age of 5. Sadly, Only a small portion of affected infants and children in Sub-Saharan Africa reach adolescence due to the gaps in our health system.”

The commissioner said that the workshop was the first comprehensive newborn screening for sickle cell disease programme in the state and part of government’s strategies to reduce infant mortality of the disease in the state.

She, therefore, expressed optimism of a success story regarding fight against sickle cell disease in the nearest future

The director, Public Health Department, Ministry of Health, Dr. Festus Soyinka, said that participants would be exposed to the five components of newborn screening including testing, tracking, treatment, education and evaluation, calling on them to maximize the training opportunity given to them.

Earlier, the Workshop facilitator, a Consultant Haematologist, Professor Norah Akinola, described the programme as a landmark event in South-West that would end the tears of many mothers and families, while thanking the government for prioritizing the health of the citizens.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.