Following concerns over HIV/AIDS prevalence in Rivers State, indications are rife that the new user fee waiver instituted by the state government will enhance the control of HIV prevalence in the state.
Giving this hint in a post user fee waiver flag-off interview, the Deputy Chief Medical Director at the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital (RSUTH), Dr Alali Dan-Jumbo, said the waiver is the best thing that has happened to HIV control in Rivers State.
Dr Dan-Jumbo, who is also the coordinator, Antiretroviral Treatment (ART) services at the RSUTH explained that the implication of the waiver is that all fees that were paid by people who test positive to HIV in order to secure treatment, are now being paid by the state government.
Such fees include test for HIV/AIDS, and if diagnosed to be positive, the person would be required to pay for consultation, registration card and sundry initial fees.
This, in the past, has discouraged those who may not be able to afford the fees to abstain from accessing treatment, even when the drugs are free.
“All these fees were paid for before, but His Excellency, the Governor of Rivers State, Chief Nyesom Wike, gave a directive that hence forth, people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHIV) accessing care should not pay for these fees.
“In waiving it, the state government, through the magnanimity of the governor, is paying for the fees on their behalf”, Dr Dan-Jumbo said.
The waiver, which also HIV positive pregnant women, and not restricted to the public health facilities, he continued will on the long run attract those who would have abstained from accessing treatment to come forth for treatment.
“At the end of the day when more people come for treatment, it will enhance the control of HIV prevalence in the state”, he said.
Speaking on the effectiveness of the execution of the governor’s directive, the National Secretary, Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS in Nigeria (NEPWHAN), Mr Clifford Emmanuel said this is where there could be a snag to “the governor’s good intentions”.
According to Mr Emmanuel, “ensuring effective execution of the governor’s directive in government-owned health facilities will be difficult without a functional monitoring and evaluation mechanism being put in place.
It will even be more difficult to check the execution of the governor’s directive in the private health sector, because some key stakeholders are likely to see it as an opportunity to extort both the government and those who require the services.
One way to ensure that the governor’s real intention of instituting the user fee waiver is achieved is for there to be an effective monitoring and evaluation mechanism, on the one hand, and the defaulters are made to face punishment.
Council Chairman’s Wife Tasks Women On Breast Feeding
The wife of Chairman of Ogu/Bolo Local Government Area of Rivers State, pastor (Mrs)Jemima Victor, says exclusive breast feeding of children will impact in the development of their intelligence quotient and enhance their educational growth.
She stated this in an interview with The Tide on the sidelines of the flagging- off of Breast Feeding campaign programme in Ogu, head quarters of the local government recently and assured that the campaign would be a continuous programme in the area until the women are acquainted and adapt with the practice.
She averred that exclusive breast feeding was crucial for growth and development of every child, adding that it was key for mothers and women to breastfeed their children .
The Ogu/Bolo first lady opined that when the babies are breastfed with the right milk, they would be able to develop the right features God deposited in them and with a right character and attitude.
She attributed the various social vices happening in the society today as to lack of intimacy between mother and child during the infancy stage, adding that breast feeding will bridge such gap between mother and child at the developing stage of every child.
“When you give a child the natural milk which is gotten from the woman’s breast milk, you get the best from such child. Let us stop giving our babies chemicals and animal milk, it will make them manifest characters like animals when they grow,” she said.
Let us breastfeed our children so that we can have generations that have been fed well and not with cow milk”, she stated.
The Ogu first lady, was decorated with the champion of nutrition breast-feeding of the local government area during the programme by the representative of the Permanent Secretary, state primary health care board at the occasion .
She assured that the award would spur her tocontinue to support and sustain the breastfeeding campaign and awareness in the area, even as she called on women in the local government area to embrace the practice for the betterment of the society.
Also speaking, the Medical Health Officer in the local government area, Dr (Mrs) Loliya Koko advised women to ensure the breastfeeding of their new born babies exclusively within the first six months without water and artificial milk, adding that it will save them from infections and diseases.
She thanked the wife of the council chairman for ensuring the success of the programme in the area.
Breast Implants’ll Not Prevent Sagging – Obstetrician
An Abuja – based Obstetrician, Dr Dauda Adekunle, has advised women who intend to go for breast implants that breast augmentation would not prevent their breast from sagging.
Adekunle gave the advice in interview with newsmen last Monday in Abuja.
According to him, women who believe breast augmentation will correct sagging breast should have a rethink, because they will also need a breast lift in addition to the breast augmentation.
“You might need additional surgery after breast implant removal. If you decide to have your implants removed, you might need a breast lift or other corrective surgery to help restore your breasts’ appearance,” he said.
He said that breast implants were not guaranteed to last a lifetime, stating that the average life span of an implant was 10 years.
“Implant rupture is a possibility, also, your breasts will continue to age, and factors such as weight gain or weight loss might change the way your breasts look,” he said.
The obstetrician also stressed that these issues would likely lead to more surgeries.
“You might need an MRI scan, which is a recommended routine monitoring with MRI after three years”, he noted.
WHO Considers Two Of Four Ebola Drugs More Effective
The World Health Organisation (WHO) considers two of four Ebola treatment drugs have been determined “more effective” than the others and will be the only ones used on patients going forward, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has announced.
WHO announced in a statement that two of the four Ebola treatment drugs were determined more effective in treating patients than others in a trial which began as part of the emergency response in the Democratic Republic of Congo on November 20, 2018.
The trial was called the Pamoja Tulinde Maisha study.
ZMapp, remdesivir, mAb114 and REGN-EB3 were the four drugs used in the trials. During trials, REGN-EB3 and mAb114 were determined to be more effective in treating Ebola than the other two, and will be the only two used going forward, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases announced in a statement.
As part of an emergency response team in the Congo, the “Together Save Lives” trial was done with a collaboration of organisations, including the Congo’s National Institute for Biomedical Research, the Ministry of Health, the NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the Alliance for International Medical Action and other organisations.
Although the final analysis of data will be completed in late September or early October of this year, the NIAID said the effectiveness of REGN-EB3 and mAb114 was “compelling enough to recommend and implement” the changes immediately.
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