… Flags-Off MNCAH Week in Lagos
The First Lady of Lagos, Dr. (Mrs.) Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu has cautioned citizens, especially pregnant women, nursing mothers and teenagers against patronising quacks for their healthcare needs.
Speaking today at the flag-off of the Year 2020 Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCAH) Week in Lagos held at the Ejigbo Local Council Development Area Secretariat, Mrs. Sanwo-Olu frowned at the rate at which pregnant women patronise quacks, who claim to be traditional birth attendants, for their ante-natal and post-natal care needs.
She said, “It is sad to note that a lot of our expectant mothers still patronise quacks who claim to be Traditional Birth Attendants, while illegally practising orthodox medicine. These quacks do nothing but to add sorrow to our people by killing their newborns, pregnant teenage girls, under-five children and even expectant mothers who patronise them for treatment, delivery and illegal termination of pregnancies”.
Mrs. Sanwo-Olu appealed to citizens, community leaders and members of the Lagos State Traditional Medicine Board to intensify efforts at exposing those involved in quackery practices in the community, stressing that the government will leave no stone unturned in embarking on interventions that will promote health and provide good quality care that is accessible to all citizens.
She urged all pregnant women and caregivers to take advantage of the free health services to be provided during the week which will commence from Monday, 5th to Friday, 9th October, 2020 across all the Primary Healthcare Centres and designated sites in the State, adding that the initiative will provide a high-impact but cost-effective health interventions to all under-five children, nursing mothers, pregnant women as well as all women and men within the reproductive age group.
According to her, the services to be rendered during the weeklong celebrations include routine immunisation as well as immunisation for defaulters or zero dose cases; Vitamin A supplementation to at least 70% of children between 6-59 months; deworming of 70% children between the ages of 12 to 59 months; Malnutrition screening for children of ages 6 to 59 months; Counselling of caregivers on Infant & Young Child Feeding (IYCF) and Food demonstration.
In her words: “Pregnant women, nursing mothers and women of childbearing age will also be provided with blood-building drugs. There will also be counselling sessions for men and women on adequate nutrition, birth preparedness, healthy-lifestyle, personal hygiene, exclusive breastfeeding, complementary feeding, hand washing and malaria prevention”.
“We shall also be distributing non-prescriptive family planning commodities as well as informative materials on key household and community practices such as personal hygiene, control of diarrhoea, proper waste disposal, adequate complementary feeding, hand washing, malaria prevention, family planning and exclusive breastfeeding”, Mrs. Sanwo-Olu explained.
Earlier in his remarks, the Honourable Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi stated that the main objective of 2020 Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCAH) Week is to improve the health-seeking behaviour of the citizens through the improvement of key household and community practices which will catapult the State towards the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals 2 and 3 which are “No Hunger” and “Good Health” respectively.
Abayomi, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Olusegun Ogboye, noted that all health facilities will be opened for consultation and services for all under-five children, mothers and adolescent boys and girls free of charge during the MNCAH week.
While noting that services at PHCs can be accessed from 8a.m to 2p.m daily, he stressed that all flagship PHCs will be opened for 24 hours during and after the week-long celebration.