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Sickle Cell Awareness:Group Organises Blood Donation Drive

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A group of young professionals in politics and governance yesterday organised a blood donation drive to draw attention to its importance in saving lives of those with anaemia.
The event organised in partnership with the National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS), was to raise awareness on sickle cell disease, Olu Onemola, one of the organisers told newsmen in Abuja.
Onemola, a former Special Assistant on New Media to the former President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, said that such initiatives are necessary to enlighten people that donating blood helps to save lives.
Our source reports that the group is made up of individuals of like minds who were either past or present Special Assistants to top politicians.
According to him, the outreach tagged “Blood Drive at the CANS,” seeks to educate participants on the importance of donating blood and raising awareness on sickle cell disease.
“A lot of Nigerians do not know that the simple act of donating blood can help to save the lives of people amongst us that have sickle cell disorder.
“With the coronavirus pandemic, we thought it will be necessary to enlighten more people on how blood donation helps to provide the necessary transfusions to sickle cell patients,” he said.
Ms Veronica Abang, one of the organisers and the Special Assistant on New Media to the Delta State Governor, who spoke after donating blood, adjudged the event as a success.
She expressed hope that more awareness would be created so that such initiatives would be replicated across Nigeria for there to be more blood available to those that require them.
“It is great to see people who have never donated blood and people who were actually scared of needles, roll up their sleeves and participate in such a worthy cause.
“Moving forward, we hope that such citizen-driven blood drives can be replicated across the nation,” Abang said.
“The turn-out was impressive, however, next time, we hope to make it bigger and better,” said Wale Bakare, Special Assistant on Electronic and Digital Media to the President of the Senate, Dr. Ahmad Lawan.
Bakare, also one of the organisers said that a lot of Nigerians were keen in engaging in such life-saving activities but lacked information as to how to participate.

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HIV: FG Restates Commitment To Prevent HIV Among Adolescents

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The Federal Government yesterday restated its commitment to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS among adolescents in the country.
The Ministry of Health in collaboration with NACA, UNFPA, UNICEF, launched a document on prevention of HIV in Abuja.
The document is integrated into three titles; “The HIV Investment Case for Adolescents and Young People (2021-2025), The National Condom Operational Plan (2021-2025) and National Condom and Lubricants Quantification (2021-2025).”
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Health, Sen. Yahaya Oloriegbe, identified condom as key in the prevention of the spread of HIV among young people.
Oloruigbe, who commended the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) and partners for the effort, called for local production of condoms.
“We need to look inwards by encouraging local manufacturing of condoms in view of government’s dwindling resources, as well as breaking away from over dependence on international donors,” he said.
The Director General of NACA, Dr Gambo Aliyu,asserted the agency’s success in the containment of HIV through prevention and treatment responses.
Aliyu said that the country was committed to achieving the 2030 target of 95-95-95 through collaboration with stakeholders by investing in adolescents.
He added, “we have made huge success when it comes to treatment and prevention with drastic reduction in transmission.”
The NACA boss however affirmed the belief of the agency in using the document to achieve the 95-95-95 target for 2030.
Mrs Zainab Garba of the Federal Ministry of Health commended NACA for launching the document, saying it would enhance young people’s access to Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights.
Garba reiterated the importance of condom in reducing the spread of HIV and maternal deaths among young people, saying it was key in preventing all manners of sexually transmitted infections.

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Doctor Warns Against Indiscriminate Use Of Contraceptives

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A medical expert, Dr Umar Musa, on Monday warned women against indiscriminate use of contraceptives.
Dr Musa, President, Kaduna State Resident Doctors Association, gave the advice when he spoke with newsmen in Kaduna, noted the indiscriminate consumption of contraceptives to ward off unwanted pregnancies and cautioned that while they could forestall unwanted pregnancies, contraceptives were not antidotes for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.
He said there was a particular contraceptive pill in hot demand, but also cautioned that its indiscriminate consumption could delay conception or damage the uterus.
“Too much of this contraceptive will weaken the wall of the womb and damage the uterus which will cause miscarriages in the future.
“There are lots of risks associated with the constant use of this drug. Most ladies consume contraceptives in clinically unsafe ways.
“They use these drugs without knowing the way they interact with the body system and forgetting that people react to drugs in different ways,’’ he said.
Musa also advocated tighter restrictions on the sale of contraceptives and suggested that the use of condoms was an option to stave off unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.
“While a condom may look like a major inconvenience and a fun killer for many, it would protect one from sexually transmitted diseases and prevent pregnancy”.

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Covid-19: NCDC Records 213 New Infections, Two Deaths

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Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) recorded 213 additional new cases of Covid-19, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 171, 324, as of July 26, 2021.
The NCDC disclosed this on its official Twitter handle yesterday morning.
The health agency also stated that it recorded two Covid-19 related deaths on Monday, while additional nine people recovered from the virus, as of July 26, 2021.
It added that the new infections were recorded in 12 states, namely: Lagos-157, Rivers-20, Plateau-12, Enugu-6, Oyo-6, Gombe-3, Bauchi-2, Imo-2, Kaduna-2, Edo-1, Ekiti-1, and Ogun-1.
It noted that since the outbreak of the Coronavirus Disease in the country on February 27, 2020, a total of 2,134 persons lost their lives, while 164,798 recovered from the virus and discharged from health centres across the country.
NCDC added that a multi-sectoral national emergency operations centre (EOC), activated at Level 2, had continued to coordinate the national response activities.
It stated  that the country tested more than 2.4 million samples for the virus and had detected 10 Covid-19 Delta variant, recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as a variant of concern, given its increased transmissibility.
The variant had been detected in over 100 countries and may spread further.
The variant has also been linked to a surge in cases in countries where it is the dominant strain in circulation. There are ongoing studies to understand the impact of the variant on existing vaccines and therapeutics.

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