–Blank NEWS Online (NIGERIA) –By Albert OGRAKA:
AS the world celebrate the 2021 World Sickle cell day, wife of Delta State Governor and founder O5 Initiative, Dame Edith Okowa has advocated that patients with Sickle Cell Anaemia deserve adequate care, devoid of stigmatism.
Dame Okowa, who gave the charge on Saturday, June 19, 2021 at the Delta State Sickle cell Referral Centre, Asaba Specialist Hospital Asaba, stated that the disorder is not a death sentence but an opportunity for people to express their love for God and humanit
She enjoined all stakeholders to engage in sensitizing the public on the need to know their genotype.
“My heart desire is to see a community, state and country that has no Sickle Cell Anaemia. We have a project that in the next 10 years, there will be no case of sickle cell.
“Ignorance is no longer as excuse, the team has a mission to care for sickle patients and we have 15 existing sickle cell clinics. The Specialist Hospital is a referral centre”, just as she commended donors for their partnerships.
“I encourage you all to show love to one another especially those with sickle cell disorder. What you can do for those young boys and girls, do it”.
Staff of the State Contributory Health Commission, were on ground to register them into the scheme for medical attention.
Mr. Martins Abebe representing Rolex Emameyam Foundation presented a cheque of N150, 000 to the wife of the state governor in support of the Sickle cell patients.
Also, the Director-General of the Initiative, Mrs. Oghenekevwe Agas, received some drugs donation from Pharm. (Dr.) Evangeline Enaike, Chairman, Association of Lady’s Pharmacist, Delta State chapter.
Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, ministry of health, Ejiro Oghenegha, called for the need to raise awareness of the disorder while Dr. Florin Ovaje spoke on the need for the warriors to stay healthy by eating balance diet, drinking between 2-4 litres of water daily.
“Avoid extreme temperature, excessive exercise” while Okolie Gift Chukwudumebi and Imobisa Blessing, shared their life experiences.”
The permanent secretary further said that due to the activities of the 05 Initiative, over 3,000 sickle cell disorder patients had benefited through the provision of free drugs for patients, created awareness and sensitization on sickle cell disorder, supplied medical equipment in sickle cell disorder clinics in Delta State.
According to him, the centre in Asaba was one of the best and most equipped Sickle Cell Referral Centers in the country, adding that it was aimed at bringing succour to sufferers of this disorder.