Monday, June 19, 2017

Aminu Tambuwal: Sokoto State Govt seeks voluntary premarital sickle cell screening

Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal.

The state government also advised all intending couples in the state to undergo counselling.

The Sokoto State Government has advocated voluntary premarital counselling and screening for Sickle Cell disease, HIV, and Hepatitis.

The State Government, through its Ministry of Health, has also advised all intending couples in the state to undergo counselling, screening and testing not only for Sickle Cell Disease, but also for HIV and Hepatitis.

The Commissioner for Health, Dr Balarabe Kakale, spoke in Sokoto on Monday when the members of the State Accountability Coalition on Maternal Health (SACOM), paid him a visit.

Kakale said: “This will reduce to the barest minimum, the prevalence of the ailments in our communities.

“The state government is also advocating for the use of Insecticide Treated Nets by residents across the state.

“This is to eradicate the scourge of malaria and we have suggested the addition of at least one ITN in bridal wares, Kayan Lefe.

“The state government has more than enough ITNs in its stores and will make it available for free, to tackle the menace of malaria.’’

The Commissioner for Health, Dr Balarabe Kakale, made this known on Sunday in Sokoto at a ceremony marking the 2017 World Sickle Cell Awareness Day, organised by the State Ministry of Health.

Kakale, however, said, “the Ministry of Health has not proposed any law that will force intending couples to undergo screening and testing for any ailment, including SCD, HIV or HBV.

“Or any law that will make it compulsory for them to procure ITN, though it is recommended and strongly encouraged.’’

He also encouraged the populace to register for the state community contributory Health Scheme, to reduce the cost of treating sickle cell and all its complications.

The commissioner said that the scheme would take care of several other ailments, as well as bone fractures caused by road crashes and allow for Universal Health Coverage.

Kakale welcomed the formation of the coalition in the state and urged it to focus more on the rural areas.

The commissioner further promised to partner with the coalition, to further improve health indices in the state.

ALSO READ: Nurses commend Sokoto Governor for assisting cancer patients

Kakale also advocated for improved funding of the health sector in the country, to further shore up the provision of efficient healthcare services to Nigerians.

He announced the membership of the coalition in the state Saving One Million Lives Programme, as well as the Health Financing Working Group.

Speaking earlier, the Chairman of the coalition, Mr Mu’azu Muhammad, represented by Hajiya Ubaida Bello, said that it was important to strengthen health systems in the state, especially maternal health.

Muhammad also lauded Gov. Aminu Tambuwal for according priority to the health sector and for appointing a health professional as commissioner.



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