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Consultant Urges Stakeholders To Key Into Mobile Health

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A Consultant Physician, Dr Femi Ogunremi, has urged stakeholders in the health sector to key into the Mobile Health (mHealth) technology to make quality healthcare accessible and available at an affordable cost.
Ogunremi, who is also the Chief Executive Officer, Monitor Healthcare Ltd, medical communication and technology company, made the call in an interview with newsmen last Sunday in Lagos.
He spoke on the sidelines of the launch of Areadoc, a medical application (App) to help patients access quality healthcare from the convenience of their smartphones.
According to him, the challenges facing the mHealth platform in Nigeria include uptake by the public, involvement by the healthcare provider, and lack of funding.
“In Nigeria we under use the mHealth platform; see what has happened in the banking industry, mobile app has revolutionalised the practice.
“It gives room for accountability and access. We are assuming that this will be the situation in the health sector.
“Internet by health service providers will help the project to thrive, but contrary opinion can lead to frustration.
“We are far below the WHO recommendation for the ratio of doctors to patients.
“This system will help to bridge this gap, but if not taken positively by healthcare providers in the sector, then the vision will stumble.
“There is need of the support of the government through funding to take the platform to the level where Nigerians will benefit from quality healthcare, “ he said.
The consultant, while speaking on Areadoc, a medical app, said that the app would bring patients directly in contact with qualified medics.
According to him, in cases where accessing healthcare is challenging such as remote areas, patients can now tap their phones and access medical help.
“A benefit of AreaDoc is it’s ability to connect the patient to a doctor without the inconvenience of going to the hospital.
“Through chats or calls, the doctor can at all hours deal with the client and even send an online prescription to the patient’s phone through the same app.
“The vision for this project is to get the app as a household product for Nigerians, especially the middle class and also, to have doctors available 24 hours every day of the week on the phone and chat.
“To do this, we need to build capacity, meaning paying salaries and making resources available with different local dialects.
“All these will come with financial challenges. However, with government or other supports we can easily overcome these, “ Ogunremi said.
While noting that the app would help in accountability and creating data, Ogunremi said, “there is also the potential to use this system to generate data that can be valuable in the hand of our government in distribution of resources.
“For the public, this will be a lifesaving move; it gives opportunity for prompt medical support.
“I can see AreaDoc as a system where students can access the care they need even discretely by chatting and opportunity to talk with a doctor promptly”.

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Breast Feeding Week: RSUTH Targets Health Personnel

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As part of measures to heighten the importance of breast feeding, authorities in the State owned Rivers State University Teaching Hospital (RSUTH) is set to sensitise its personnel on the need to ensure that nursing mothers embrace exclusive breast feeding.
The programme forms part of the weeklong activity on breast feeding and is billed to hold tomorrow to school staffers on the health benefits and why they should support the campaign
Member of a committee set up on breast feeding, Nurse Agana Ebirien in a chat with The Tide said the hospital is breast feeding friendly and has over the years held campaigns within and outside the hospital to promote breast feeding.
She stressed the need for health workers to be ambassadors at the forefront for the quest to ensure breast feeding is highly embraced by mothers visiting the health facility.
Ebirien said this year’s theme: “Step Up Breast Feeding, Educate and Support” is aimed at raising awareness and underscoring the need for nursing mothers to exclusively breast feed their babies.
She said, “Most nursing mothers don’t want to breast feed their babies because of the myths surrounding breast feeding. Some of the myths include danger of colostrum and many others.”
Ebiriien explained that the colostrums which is the first drop of breast milk from a nursing is the richest and healthiest part of the breast milk, as it helps boost the baby’s immunity and prevents him from falling ill frequently.
The nursing expert therefore called on nursing mothers to ensure they breast feed their babies exclusively for at least six months, and then breast feed with complementary feeding upto two years.
A nurse and expert on women health, Nurse Agana Ebirien has listed the benefit of breast feeding with the call on nursing mothers to exclusively breast feed their babies for at least six months without water or glucose water.
Nurse Ebirien in an exclusive chat with The Tide said thre are huge benefits of exclusive breast feeding to help the mothers and baby health in the future
Some of the benefits she said include the boosting of the child’s immunity, and improving the child memory and intelligence.
She noted that mothers who breast feed their babies help curb obesity in their babies in the future, as she described breast milk as “ balanced diet in balanced proportion”.
For the mothers she noted that breast feeding help to heal the uterus , “ as the baby sucks the breast the uterus contract and that curbs bleeding in mothers.”
In addition, the nurse explained that mothers who breast feed their babies for a long time also reduce the occurrence of breast and ovarian cancers.
She added that breast feeding is also economical as it saves the family from spending huge sums from buying milk and other condiments to feed the baby, and therefore called on fathers, and the menfolk in general to encourage their wives to breast feed their babies.

By: Kevin Nengia

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Nursing Mothers Cautioned On Exclusive Breast Feeding

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As Rivers State joins the rest of the world to observe the 2022 World Breast Feeding Week, some nursing mothers in Rivers State have cautioned their colleagues not to use poverty and hardship as an excuse against the practice of exclusive breastfeeding of their babies.

It would be recalled that some nursing mothers have cited poverty as factor responsible to practice exclusive breastfeeding of their babies.

Speaking, a mother of three from Okrika, Mrs Patience Owiriwa, said mothers have no excuse not to practice exclusive breastfeeding.

“I advise that as a mother, if you don’t have anything to feed a child, go for breast milk, even if it is little fish you buy to cook.

“That money you use for milk, use it to buy ‘Sungu’ and any good cooking things.

“If you buy N500 fish, you can cook soup that will carry you. When you are eating well, your baby is eating well too”, she said.

Owiriwa said exclusive breast milk prevents children from reacting to unnecessary sicknesses.

“He will be very OK. With breast milk, every vitamin is inside that breast milk; so, even if you feed him with only breast milk, he is good to go”.

Another respondent, Mrs Nnenna Amadi from Ikwerre Local Government Area said, “when you breast feed a child well, you find out that the baby will be OK.

“Moreover, when you do exclusive breastfeeding, the child will not be sick, he will be healthy and plump.

“The breast milk will make the child very sharp”, she said.

This year’s World Breastfeeding Week is from August 1 to 7, 2022.

The theme for this year’s event is: ‘Step Up For Breastfeeding: Educate and Support’.

It would be recalled that the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) had recommended that children be initiated to breastfeeding the first hour of birth and exclusively breastfed the first six months of life.

However, some nursing mothers, who spoke on the celebration in an interview said, poverty was hampering their effort to exclusively breastfeed their babies for the first six months of birth.

Accordingly, Esther Alaka, a nursing mother said, “you must eat well before you can give your babies breast.

By: John Bibor & Oribim Ibama
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Tiger Nuts Can Heal Urinary Infections -Study

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The experts have evaluated the antioxidant vitamins (vitamins A, C and E) and antibacterial potential of tiger nut extracts against germs that cause human urinary tract infection pathogens. These are Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Klebsiella pneumonia.
Many individuals, including diabetics, eat tiger nut mainly for its sweetness and for its high content of arginine, which is reported to stimulate the production of insulin. Now, in a new study, researchers have said it is a fruit that should be consumed more to prevent and treat urinary tract infections.
The susceptibility of these disease-causing germs towards the tiger nut extracts was compared with each other and with gentamicin, which was used as a positive control. All plant extracts showed antimicrobial activities against the selected microorganisms at various concentrations and the methanol extract was found to be most effective compared to ethyl acetate extract.
In addition, the antioxidant vitamin composition in the different extracts of tiger nut indicated that it contained an appreciable amount of these vitamins. However, the concentrations of these vitamins were considerably higher in the methanol extract, with Vitamin E exceeding the daily recommended intake by international standards in both extracts.
The study published in the Journal of Agroalimentary Processes and Technologies involved Imaobong E. Daniel and Etukudo Edigeal D. at the Department of Chemistry, University of Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, and it was to authenticate the medicinal importance of tiger nut.
Urinary tract infections (UTI) affect any part of the urinary tract which could be the kidney, ureter, bladder and urethra. The causes of UTIs include sexual intercourse with infected persons, poor hygiene, holding urine longer than necessary, underlying kidney stones, diabetes and loss of oestrogen.
All over the world, millions of people are diagnosed with urinary tract infections (UTI) every year. It is estimated that about 35 percent of healthy individuals suffer from symptoms of UTI at some stage in their lives, with incidences occurring mostly in women than men.
Culled from Tribune online.

By Kevin Nengia

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