Ignorance Responsible For Misconception Of Under-Five Free Medical Services —Dame Okowa

BY VINCENT ANIKWUSHE/PATRICK MGBODO
WIFE of Delta State Governor, Dame Edith Okowa, at the weekend flagged off the 2017 Maternal Newborn Child Health Week, (MNCHW), charging Deltans to avail themselves of free medical services for children under five, the disabled and senior citizens above 65 years.
Speaking during the ceremony held in the Oshimili South Local Government Arcade,
Asaba, Okowa attributed the misconception
of the under- five free medical services to ignorance and lack of interest by the public, adding that this has caused much suffering for the children.
“The problem we have in our society is that some people know and they pretend not to know, some do not know and they do not even want to know” she said
Okowa charged the women present to propagate the message in their various communities, stressing that no person is permitted to be ignorant except such a person
refuses to be educated, even as she said that the consequences of not appreciating immunization could lead to polio and paralysis.
Earlier, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Nicolas Azinge, had said that the MNCH is a strategy implemented as a simple approach to the delivery of a combination of services intended to bring about increased coverage of core preventive and curative interventions
that enable mother and child thrive and develop.
Azinge said that the strategic approach supports and utilizes the existing health structures and manpower, rather than setting
up arbitrary parallel structures, adding that the package of interventions include immunization, nutrition services, malaria elimination, care of pregnant women, and family planning.
He said that the benefits of the initiative include, achieving high coverage and reduced
inequalities, focus on the continuum of care model, implemented by existing health workers, does not require high level of specialization in delivering the service
‘Parents, Guardians and other caregivers are advised to take advantage of the numerous
health programs of the state government
by accessing the free health services provided especially the most vulnerable groups’ Azinge urged.
Meanwhile, the Chairman, Governing Board of the Delta State Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr. Isioma Okoba,
said that MNCHW is a bi-annual activity
that aims at achieving the highest possible
coverage of women and children with multi interventions, adding that her team has concluded various key pre-implementation
activities, even as she thanked Dame Okowa for her commitment to the wellbeing
of women and children.
While commending the frontline health workers for their impressive performance, Okoba said that there is need to be more prudent in the documentation of the services
rendered at the health facilities, adding
that health workers should be selfless and focused on the discharge of their calling
in order to achieve set targets.
“All hands must be on deck including stakeholders such as women groups, heads of households, youth groups, community based organizations, faith based organizations,
traditional rulers, and community leaders to forge a cohesive platform” she said.