Monday, 5 November 2018

Yakasai Performs Foundation Laying Ceremony For Multi-Million PSN Towers


Chioma Umeha

President of Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) on Friday performed the ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of the society’s multi-million naira eight-floor edifice tagged, “PSN Towers.”
The ground breaking ceremony came after a long struggle by the PSN to retrieve the land located in the eyebrow area of Victoria Island in Lagos.
The land which is estimated at 1,430 square metres was allocated to the society by the first Civilian Governor of Lagos, Alhaji Lateef Jakande at a time he was giving lands to professional bodies which applied for same.
It was learnt that the development of the land was contracted to two different contractors on Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) basis but the contractors allegedly defaulted.
It eventually became a matter of litigation as the case was taken to the Land Tribunal in Lagos.
But when the President of PSN assumed the mantle of leadership, he explored every avenue to ensure the recovery of the land and through the intervention of prominent Nigerians especially the Oba of Lagos, Riliwanu Akiolu, the PSN was able to retrieve the choice land.
Performing the ground-breaking exercise signalling the commencement of work, Yakasai who is rounding up his tenure as the President of PSN recalled the tortuous battle to get back the land, saying the society almost lost the property.
He specifically thanked the Oba of Lagos for his intervention.
He said: “This is the PSN Towers, the commercial arm of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN). We have been trying to see that we build our own headquarters where most of the big organisations are situated, that is former AfriBank Street which is now called Church Gate.
“And by the grace of God after retrieving our land which was in court for many years, I thank God and I must appreciate and extend my gratitude to the Oba of Lagos for intervening to get this land back to us.”
“Today we are doing the ground breaking of building of eight floors, a big edifice that we will tag the PSN towers. By the grace of God we want to complete it within a record time.”
Yakasai who disclosed that the project would be self-financed said the building would be put to commercial use by renting it to banks and corporate bodies.
He did not however rule out the possibility of giving it out to investors on a win-win situation. “But if we have a big investor that is not selfish, that’s not greedy, that thinks about the win-win situation, definitely the door is open there,” he added. Arch. Akose Enebeli who explained the architectural proposition of the building said it is an eight – storey building comprising six floors and two level car parks with each floor having enough spaces for banking halls and other commercial purposes.
Dr. John Nwaiwu, Chairman of the Property Committee said, “This story is a long term story. It is been on and off. By the time we acquired it, some people came and had an arrangement with us. They couldn’t keep their own part of the bargain and so on and so forth. In fact we almost lost it.”
“Except for the hard work and greater commitment of the President, Ahmed Yakasai. He almost touched the sky to make sure we got the land back and kudos to him.”



PSN Moves To Ensure Safety Of Medicines

L-R: Prince Julius Adewale, Nigerian Pharmacist and legal practitioner; Pharm Ahmed Yakasai, President, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN); Chairman, Pharm Lekan Asuni, Nigeria Pharmaceutical Industry IT, Platform Project; Pharm. Olumide Akintayo, Past president of PSN, during the launching of the Pharm iT NDDG online Platform, and PSNPay, Online Capitation Payment platform and unveiling of PSN Vision 2050 Strategy document held at Sheraton hotels, Ikeja, Lagos on Tuesday.
R-L Pharm. Tosin Adeyemi, National Editor in Chief, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN); Dr. Arinola Joda, Publicity Secretary, PSN; Rosemary Nikoro, Secretary, Board of Fellows, PSN; Pharm  Ahmed Yakasai, President; Pharm. Bolanle F. O. Adeniran, Chairman, PSN Lagos State and others,  during a press conference on the forthcoming 91st annual national conference of PSN scheduled to  hold from October 29 to  November 3, at lbadan Oyo state, held in Lagos, weekend.

•Launches Premier Pharma Industry IT Platform, Digitalised System Of Payment •It Would Be Largest Drugs Supply Chain System In Africa - Pharm. Asuni

Chioma Umeha

It was Publius Ovidius Naso, the ancient Roman poet, celebrated as Ovid in the English-speaking world who said, “Medicine sometimes snatches away health, sometimes gives it.”
Corroborating this old saying, the recent report of World Health Organisation (WHO) said; “More than half of all medicines are prescribed, dispensed or sold inappropriately, and that half of all patients fail to take them correctly.
“The overuse, underuse or misuse of medicines results in wastage of scarce resources and widespread health hazards,” the world health body added.
Irrational use of medicines is a major problem worldwide. And acting in sync with the WHO’s findings, the Federal Government released a New Drug Distribution Guidelines (NDDG) in 2012.
However, there are concerns among experts over the Federal Government’s delay in implementing the National Drug Policy, more so as they believe it will promote local drug production and reduce dependence on imported medicines.
In view of these, the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) has launched a pharmaceutical information technology (IT) platform.
According to PSN, the online platform will improve drug distribution channel and ensure safety of medicines in compliance with NDDG.
Known as Pharma IT NDDC Platform, it was launched in Lagos Tuesday, alongside the PSN Pay, a digitalised system of payment and collection of PSN annual capitation and other technical and interest groups of the society’s dues both in states and national.
Pharm. Ahmed Yakasai, PSN President had earlier announced the launch at a press briefing in Lagos on the forthcoming 91st annual national conference of the society, saying, the online platform would improve the distribution channel and enhance the safety and efficacy of medicines.
Yakasai explained that the new IT platform would act as a regulator in the distribution and use of medicines among manufacturers and consumers, thereby improving the distribution channel and enhancing the safety and efficacy of medicines.
Yakasai said; “Pharmit is a pharma industry IT solution facilitated by PSN under our leadership to compliment implementation of the National Drug Distribution Guidelines (NDDG).
“Also, it will serve as a central repository and interface for exchange of information for the practitioners and practice, as well as, provide visibility to the Regulators (PCN, NAFDAC, etc) for control and fight against fake, substandard and falsified products, all around the real time dynamics of premises, products and practitioners involved in the distribution of medicines in Nigeria.
“The world is currently witnessing information communication technology (ICT) revolution and our industry should not miss the train.”
According to the PSN boss, the platform is open to all pharmacists and pharmaceutical outlets in the health-delivery value chain of the country.
“The platform will contribute immensely in the fight against fake, substandard and falsified drugs in the country because every batch of medicine in the country can be traced. The Pharma IT NDDG Platform and PSN pay are powered by Chams Plc.”

Concerning the PSN Pay, Yakasai said the existing collection process is manual, rigorous and prone to error which needs to be overhauled and digitalised, noting that this was part of his campaign promises.
However, the President explained that the new digital mode of payment would improve on the operation of PSN in collection of dues by its members and also reduce the stress of capitation payment by pharmacists.
He said; “Psnpay is going to digitalise the payment and collection of PSN annual capitation and other technical and interest groups of PSN dues for both states and national as powered by Chamsswitch.
“The existing collection process is manual, rigorous and prone to error which needs to be overhauled and digitalised as promised during my campaign.
“PSNpay is an end-to-end automated payment/ collection platform that will ultimately improve operational efficiency of PSN and its technical and interest groups.
“PSN pay will improve on the current manual process of collections made by PSN members and reduce the stress of capitation payment by pharmacists.
“It will enhance transparency and accountability. It will avoid reconciliation issues; enhance reporting system and also improve operational efficiency,” he noted.
Yakasai, further appealed to the government as a matter of urgency to take critical action to implement the National Drug Policy in order to promote local drug production and reduce dependence on imported medicines.
Yakasai said the implementation of the National Drug Policy, which would eliminate the present chaotic drug distribution system in the country, was key to ending Nigeria being made a dumping ground for all sorts of unwholesome and substandard imported drugs.
Concerning drug tracking and recall, he said being able to track drugs within the system, was necessary because of situations when medicines in circulation would be recalled to safeguard the health of the consuming public.
The PSN President urged Nigerians to be on the alert against any contaminated drugs imported into country from China.
On the forthcoming 91st annual national conference of the society, the PSN President stated that its theme is; “Innovative Disruption in Pharmacy in Emerging Economies: A Roadmap for Nigeria,” was carefully chosen to advance the national discourse on survival and significance in a time of fast and tempestuous transformation.
The PSN boss revealed that the conference which would hold from October 29 – November 3, 2018 in Oyo State, will witness the attendance of not less than 5,000 pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists nationwide as well as those in diaspora.
He also said that it would be a forum to exploit avenues to improve contributions from the pharmaceutical sector to the nation’s economy.
Yakasai said, “The theme has been carefully chosen to advance the national discourse on survival and significance in a time of rapid and turbulent change.”
According to the president of the PSN, “Whether you are disruptively innovating or defending against disruptive challenger, we must do things differently to move from good to great as a profession and as a country,” adding, “We must develop new model that would replace the old model.”
While the conference would be declared open by Dr. Bukola Saraki, the Senate President, as a special guest of honour, Abiola Ajimobi, the Oyo State Governor would be the chief host.
Pharm. Clare Omatseye, the President of Healthcare Federation of Nigeria (HFN) and Chief Executive Officer/ Managing Director of JNC international Limited is expected to be the keynote speaker.
Similarly, the Olubadan, Oba Saliu Akanmu Adetunji would be the royal father at the opening ceremony.
“We would also have our election during our annual general meeting (AGM) to vote in new leadership,” Yakasai added.
In all, a week-long activity have been planned to hold during the annual conference.
The health walk to be led by the wife of the Oyo State Governor, Mrs. Florence Ajimobi is tagged “Pharmacists Against Drug Abuse” would hold on Monday, October 29 after the arrival and registration of delegates.
Furthermore, he said there would be a Health Outreach at the Palace of the Olubadan in Idiarere.
According to the president of the PSN, “Nigerians should expect a positive force of disruption to emerge pharmaceutically after November 3.
Commenting, Pharm. Lekan Asuni, observed that the pharma industry will benefit greatly from IT solutions that ensure the right drugs are sold by the right practitioners at the right premises in view of the menace of drugs abuse and recurrent cases of counterfeit and unregistered drugs.
Pharm Asuni who is the Nigeria Pharma Industry IT Platform Project Chairman, explained that the project aims to be the largest drugs supply chain system in Africa.
He said, the major objective is to have a comprehensive IT driven industry from the source, local/import, to the consumer of medicines in the country.
According to him, the IT Platform will “Enable track and trace of medicine in the supply chain; Harness the information and interaction of registered practitioners and products on a single platform.
“It will also, create access for the consumer of health for information on products and their feedback; generate data for industrial use, among other things.
“Pharm IT establishes trusted and secure drugs supply chain guaranteeing that only registered products are distributed among practitioners in premises across the country.”


NMA Seeks Elimination Of Trans-Fatty Acids From Foods


•Says It’s Responsible For Epidemics Of Sudden Deaths

Chioma Umeha

Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has attributed epidemics of sudden deaths associated with heart attacks to consumption of industrially produced Trans-Fatty Acids (TFAs) are toxic chemicals.
The apex body of medical doctors therefore called for the elimination of industrially produced Trans-Fatty Acids (TFAs) from Nigeria’s food supply by banning Partially Hydrogenated Oils or setting strict limits on TFAs in food in line with international best practices.
According to NMA, sudden deaths is traceable to CVD have continuously swollen the epidemic proportions and figures of NCDs around the globe and in Nigeria.
In Nigeria, CVD accounts for seven per cent of deaths annually, with NCDs as a whole causing 24 per cent of total deaths. One diet-related factor that contributes heavily to the incidence of CVD is industrially-produced TFA. Industrially-produced TFA is a toxic chemical that increases the risk of heart attack and death, causing 540,000 deaths annually across the globe. This is Nigeria’s chance to deal significantly with an easily preventable risk factor for CVD.
In a press statement signed and made available to DAILY INDEPENDENT Tuesday in Lagos, by Dr Francis Faduyile and Olumuyiwa Odusote, the President and Secretary-General respectively, stated that many countries have demonstrated that eliminating industrially produced TFAs alone can reverse the epidemic proportions of CVD and lower the overall mortality indices of NCDs.
The statement noted that the need to urgently and totally eliminate industrially produced TFAs in all products in the Nigeria food supply cannot be overstressed.
It further said that doing otherwise will mean consequent endorsement of the deaths of more than 18 million people each year from cardiovascular diseases (CVD), despite the availability of effective, inexpensive, and safe prevention and treatment.
The elimination of TFAs has been shown to have substantial health benefits. Several countries have already instituted TFA policies and seen positive results. Prior to the elimination of industrially-produced TFA in Denmark, the CVD mortality rate was 441.5 deaths per 100,000 people. Following the implementation of the ban in 2004, the CVD mortality rate has fallen to 14.2 deaths per 100,000 people.
“Evidence shows that industrially-produced TFAs can be eliminated from food supply chains with little to no disruption to the public or to the food industry.
“Industrially-produced TFAs can be replaced with healthier alternatives without altering taste or increasing cost.”
NMA therefore encouraged NAFDAC to take this opportunity to eliminate industrially-produced TFAs from all products in the Nigerian food supply chain by strengthening the Draft 2018 Fats & Oils Regulation Policy by banning partially hydrogenated oils in the Nigerian food supply chain – including all domestic and imported products that already include industrially-produced TFAs.
According to the statement, “Doing so will not only save lives, bring health benefits to Nigerian citizens, but also showcase the Agency as a responsive institution of Government that is alive to its responsibilities. It will also be a showpiece of Nigeria’s leadership in public health decision making for the rest of the world especially in the developing regions.
It would be recalled the World Health Organisation (WHO) called on countries to eliminate industrially-produced trans-fatty acids (TFAs) from the global food supply, and released an action package called REPLACE that includes policy recommendations and interventions for governments to pursue.
“Backed by scientific evidence and examples of successful TFAs regulation in different countries, the WHO recommends one of two policy pathways.
First is banning the use of partially hydrogenated oils, the source of industrially produced TFAs, in all foods or setting limits on the amount of industrially-produced TFAs to no more than two per cent of the total fat content in all foods.
“It will be recalled that NAFDAC had duly begun the process of reviewing the 2005 Fats & Oils Regulation and has published the Draft 2018 edition of the Fats & Oils Regulation.
“The agency had asked the Nigerian public for contributory memos to enrich the process and content of the review efforts that will produce the 2018 Fats & Oils Regulation in Nigeria.”
NMA however commended this timely effort of the agency which aligns with the global efforts and paradigm shift to narrow the spectrum of risk factors of cardiovascular diseases which have continued to swell the epidemic of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) around the globe by eliminating industrially produced TFAs from all food supplies.
NMA recognises this as an important step forward in improving the diets and health outcomes of Nigerians and a turning point for Nigeria to join the comity of nations which has successfully eliminated the production, importation, distribution and consumption of industrially produced TFAs from their food supply.
As a responsive and responsible custodian of the health of the Nigerian people; the NMA, in response to the WHO directive summarised in the REPLACE strategy, has put together a pragmatic phased agenda.
The strategy is tagged; ‘Improving the Cardiovascular-health of Nigerians Project’ (The ICON Project) and serves as a veritable platform to engage all stakeholders and mobilise support for NAFDAC and by extension Nigeria to defeat the monster of TFAs and other related risk factors implicated in cardiovascular diseases.
The ICON Project provides a unique opportunity to also address other public health challenges posed by the consumption of industrially-produced TFAs.

PSN Unveils Pharma Info-Tech Platform For Drug Distribution, Safety


Chioma Umeha

To improve drug distribution channel and ensure safety of medicines in compliance with the National Drug Distribution Guidelines (NDDG), the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) is to roll out a pharmaceutical information technology online platform.
The online technology known as Pharma IT NDDC Platform would be launched in Lagos today, alongside the PSN Pay, a digitalised system of payment and collection of PSN annual capitation and other technical and interest groups of the society’s dues both in states and national.
Pharm. Ahmed Yakasai, PSN President announced this at a press briefing in Lagos on the forthcoming 91st annual national conference of the society, saying, the online platform would improve the distribution  channel and enhance the safety and efficacy of medicines.
Yakasai explained that this would be made possible as the IT platform would act as a regulator in the distribution and use of medicines among manufacturers and consumers.
Yakasaid said; “ Pharma IT NDDG  platform is an online platform that provides a distribution channel which is in consonance with the NDDG. It is open to all pharmacists and pharmaceutical outlets in the health-delivery value chain of the country.
“The platform will contribute immensely in the fight against fake, substandard and falsified drugs in the country because every batch of medicine in the country can be traced. The Pharma IT NDDG Platform and PSN pay are powered by Chams Plc” Concerning the PSN Pay, Yakasai said the new digital mode of payment would improve on the operation of PSN in collection of dues by its members and also reduce the stress of capitation payment by pharmacists.
“It will enhance transparency and accountability.  It will avoid reconciliation issues; enhance reporting system and also improve operational efficiency”, he noted.
On the forthcoming 91st annual national conference of the society, the PSN President stated that its theme is; “Innovative Disruption in Pharmacy in Emerging Economies: A Roadmap for Nigeria,” was carefully chosen to advance the national discourse on survival and significance in a time of fast and tempestuous transformation.
The PSN boss revealed that the conference which would hold from October 29    November 3, 2018 in Oyo State, will be declared open by Dr. Bukola Saraki, the Senate President,  as a special guest of honour, while Abiola Ajimobi, the Oyo State Governor  would be the chief host.
He also said that Pharm. Clare Omatseye, the President of Healthcare Federation of Nigeria (HFN) and Chief Executive Officer/ Managing Director of JNC international Limited would be the keynote speaker.
L-r Mr. Onyeka Onyeibor, Managing Director Miral Pharmaceutical Limited also Chairman planning Committee, Pharm Ahmed Yakasai, President, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) and Pharm.Emeka Duru, National Secretary PSN , during a Press Conference on the forth Coming 91st annual national conference of (PSN) scheduled on October 29th -3rd November ,at lbadan Oyo state ,held in Lagos weekend.

Yakasai, further appealed to the government as a matter of urgency to take critical action to implement the National Drug Policy in order to promote local drug production and reduce dependence on imported medicines.
He urged Nigerians to be on the alert against any contaminated drugs imported into country from China.

‘Rapid Diagnostic Test Is Critical To Effective Malaria Treatment’


Chioma Umeha

The National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP) has advised Nigerians to stop self-medication and go for Rapid Diagnostic Test (RDT) for proper malarial testing, dismissing reports that Lagos was malaria-free.
Dr Audu Mohammed, the National Coordinator, NMEP, made the call at the Integrated Health Parley organised by Breakthrough Action-Nigeria in collaboration with the Health Writers Association of Nigeria (HEWAN) in Lagos, insisting that RDT is the way to effective Malaria treatment.
Represented by Mr. Chukwu Okoronkwo, the Head, Advocacy, Communication and Social Mobilisation, the NMEP boss also called for more donor agencies and increased domestic financing to drive malaria elimination in the country even as North West leads in malaria burden.
He maintained that adequate funding was needed to achieve malaria-free Nigeria.
Mohammed further announced that the burden of malaria remains a public health concern, but lamented that the country is largely donor-dependent.
He said; “Quite a lot of donor partners are supporting malaria elimination in the country, but in spite of their fund support, we still have huge gap which is why malaria is still endemic in Nigeria.
“We are appealing to more donor agencies to come in and government at all levels should increase their funding for malaria elimination,” he added.
Mohammed said that the prevalence of malaria in Nigeria is 27 per cent and there are variations of endemicity across geopolitical zones going by the 2015 Malaria Indicator Survey (MIS).
“The World Malaria Report of 2017 indicates that Nigeria contributes 27 per cent of the 216 million malaria cases and 24 per cent of the 445,000 malaria deaths.
“About three out of 10 persons having malaria in the world live in Nigeria; one out of four deaths from malaria globally occur in Nigeria and over 54 million malaria cases recorded annually for the last three years. We also have prevalence across zones in the country according to 2015 National Malaria Indicator Survey.”
According to the 2015 National Malaria Indicator Survey, the North West leads in high burden of malaria with 37 percent while the South East recorded lowest prevalence of 14 percent. Other regions recorded; North Central- 32 per cent, North East -26 per cent, South-South- 19 per cent, South West 17 per cent and South East 14 per cent.
However, Mohammed noted that increased funding for malaria elimination would provide equitable, comprehensive, cost effective, efficient and quality malaria control services.
On her part, Itohowo Uko, Deputy Director, National Tuberculosis, Burulli Ulcer and Leprosy Control Programme (NTBLCP) of the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) decried the rising proportions of tuberculosis occurrence in Nigeria’s communities which are hardly reported to the authorities.
Uko said this, while elaborating on the burden of TB in the country.
According to her, Nigeria is classified among the 14 countries with burden of TB.
Uko also pointed out that TB is one of the top 10 causes of death worldwide.
“Tuberculosis otherwise known as TB,” she explained, “is an infectious disease caused by the germ Mycobacterium Tuberculosis that affects the lungs mainly but may affect any other parts of the body.” 
According to World Health Organisation (WHO) 2017 Global Report, it is estimated that two out of every 1000 Nigerians will have TB, Uko stated.
Despite the enormity of burden of TB in Nigeria, Uko assured that the disease is completely curable if detected and treated early.
“The drugs and diagnostic tests are free of charge in Nigeria,” she stressed, adding that there is urgent need to increase early TB case finding, notification and treatment.
Low TB case findings, low TB treatment coverage, low awareness on TB and TB services among the general population, dwindling donor funding, and inadequate government funding at all levels, the FMoH official corroborated, are the challenges faced by NTBLCP in tackling the burden of TB in Nigeria.
Commenting, Dr Bolatito Aiyenigba, Deputy Director, Malaria and Tuberculosis Project, Breakthrough Action-Nigeria, said that the project was focused on integrated social health behaviour of Nigerians. Aiyenigba tasked the media to write stories and feature articles to provide adequate information to all Nigerians such that at least 80 per cent of the populace habitually takes appropriate malaria preventive and treatment actions.


Female Genital Mutilation: Ending Inhumanity To Womanhood


Chioma Umeha

Married at the age of 17, Hadassah Isah had no idea of what future had in store for her until she tied the nuptial knots and became pregnant.
Like every newly wedded young lady, Hadassah was happy. But, her joy was cut short by dyspareunia – pain during sexual intercourse.
Also, Hadassah suddenly began to experience virginal itching, painful urination and menstrual problems. Next, she was diagnosed with genital tissue damage, reproductive tract and chronic genital infections. The diagnosis further showed keloids and cyst.
Her new marriage was threatened with failure. Hadassah’s joy was therefore unimaginable when it became confirmed that she was pregnant. But, her joy was short-lived. She developed Fistula after struggling with prolonged labour for three days, despite undergoing Caesarean section.
According to her doctor, Hadassah’s health crisis ranging from haemorrhage, excessive bleeding, pain, shock, genital tissue swelling, infections, pro-longed labour, caesarean section and postpartum haemorrhage are some of the risks of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).
Her parents had ignorantly allowed her to be cut because they reportedly wanted to prevent her from being promiscuous. They wanted her virginity to be preserved so that her bride price would be huge. What Haddasah had was Type 3 female genital mutilation, which is called infibulation. That is the removal of all external genitalia, which leave a small opening for blood and urine.
This procedure is usually performed by elderly women under unsanitary conditions, with Scissors, razor blade or knives; no anaesthetics were used.
Her doctor had performed surgery on her to correct the damage done to her female genitalia after she was infibulated as a child before the pregnancy occurred. Her genitalia had to be opened for the passage of penis and baby.
Also, her female genitalia were further cut open to allow passage of foetal head while she remained in serious pains.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) reports that Female genital mutilation include all procedures which involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or injury to the female genital organs, whether for cultural or any other non-therapeutic reasons.
The world health body further classifies FGM into four major types, namely; Type I (Clitoridectomy), Type II (Excision), Type III (Infibulation) and Type IV.
Hadassah represent millions of girls who go through torture under the knives of genital mutilators worldwide.
The United Nations (UN) health body in its 2018 reported that young girls between zero and 15 years even women are subjected to female genital mutilation in worldwide.
Of the 200 million girls and women globally living with the consequences of FGM, 44 million are aged less than 15 years, the report further said.
According to the report, three million girls are at risk of the practice every year.
Nigeria is among four countries where two thirds of all women who have undergone FGM/C live; the other three countries are Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan.
Specifically, Nigeria has shares 25 per cent of the burden of e female genital mutilation which occur in Africa.

“Nigeria 10 to 25 per cent cases of female genital mutilation of the African countries where the practice is till rife,” the report said.
Analysts are therefore are worried that Nigeria is home to millions of those who survived female genital mutilation (FGM) despite its dangers. More worrisome is the high level of ignorance concerning the practice of FGM.
Most recent estimates from UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme On FGM/C Abandonment: Accelerating Change Phase II report from 2014 to 2017 show that Nigeria has zero to 28 per cent prevalence along with Yemen.
In 2016, UNICEF estimated that at least 200 million women and girls in 30 countries have been subjected to FGM.
While earlier focus in Nigeria has generally been on three major types of FGM/C practiced -Type I, Type II, and Type III – recent evidence shows that different forms of Type IV are as prevalent as the other types, especially in the northern regions, where little attention has been paid over the years.
The procedures for FGM can take place anytime from a few days after a child’s birth to a few days after a woman’s death.
Although FGM is known to be widespread in Nigeria and is an important issue in international discourse, nationally representative data on its prevalence in Nigeria is comparatively rare.
Speaking during two-day review meeting with media – radio – partners on ending FGM in Nigeria which was organised by National Orientation Agency (NOA), Oyo State with support from UNICEF, Benjamin Mbakwem, FGM/C Consultant for Ebonyi & Imo State, UNICEF Enugu Field Office, said it is an out-dated practice and tradition that threatening the rights of girls and women to development, protection and ultimately survival.
He stressed that no form of female genital mutilation is safe as it endangers women’s life.
Describing the structure of the normal female external genitalia, he said this include; Skene’s and Batholins glands, vaginal orifice, urethral meatus, clitoris, perineum, labia minora and labia majora.
The functions of the normal female external genitalia are; lubrication of the vagina, it allows the escape of the menstrual flow, sexual intercourse and delivery of the baby, it allows emptying of the bladder within a few minutes, it assists women to achieve sexual satisfaction, it supports the pelvic organs and separates vagina from anus, it protects structures and orifices and protects the inner structures and orifices.
The unaltered female genitalia are the prepuce, labia minora, labia majora, Bartholin glands, clitoris, urethra, vaginal Introitus, perineum and anus.
The female genital mutilation is classified by the world health organisation-WHO into four types.
In the first type we have the Clitoridectomy which is the partial or total removal of the clitoris ( a small, sensitive and erectile part of the female genitals) and in very rare cases, only the Prepuce ( the fold of the skin surrounding the clitoris).
Under the first type of the female genital mutilation there are two other parts which is the removal of the prepuce/ clitoral hood (circumcision ) and the removal of the clitoris with the prepuce ( clitoridectomy).
The prepuce, labia minora, labia majora, Bartholin glands, clitoris, urethra, vaginal Introitus, perineum and anus are organs that make up the two parts above.

In the second type we have the Excision which is the partial or total removal of the clitoris and the labia minora, with or without excision of the Majora – the labia are “ the lips” that surround the vagina.
There are three other parts that make up the second type which is the removal of the labia minora only, this is made up of the prepuce, labia minora, labia majora, Bartholin glands, clitoris, urethra, vaginal Introitus, Perineum and anus.
In the second part we have the partial or total removal of the clitoris and the labia minora and it is also made up of the prepuce, labia minora, labia majora, Bartholin glands, clitoris, urethra, vaginal Introitus, perineum and anus but in this case the prepuce may be affected.
In the third part it is the partial or total removal of the clitoris, the labia minora and the labia majora in addition with the prepuce, labia minora, labia majora, Bartholin glands, clitoris, urethra, vaginal Introitus, perineum and anus.
The last type is the Infibulation which is the narrowing of the vaginal opening through the creation of a covering seal. The seal is formed by cutting and repositioning the inner, or outer, labia, with or without removal of the clitoris.
We have two parts under this type and first is the removal and positioning the labia minora with or without excision of the clitoris and in this an infibulation can occur which may be as a result of the healing and not necessarily of the stitching.
The prepuce, labia minora, labia majora, Bartholin glands, clitoris, urethra, vaginal Introitus, perineum and anus are organs that make up the first but the prepuce and clitoris may be affected in this case.
The second part is the removal and positioning the labia majora with or without excision of the clitoris in this also an infibulation can occur which may be as a result of the healing and not necessarily of the stitching.
The prepuce, labia minora, labia majora, bartholin glands, clitoris, urethra, vaginal introltus, perineum and anus are organs that make up the first but the prepuce, labia minora and clitoris may be affected in this case.
The final type is the unclassified which is the use of all other harmful procedures to the female genitalia for non-medical purposes, for example; pricking, pulling, piercing, incising, scrapping and cauterization.
This is an unbridled contravention of the international Child Rights Act adopted by Nigeria in 2003 to domesticate the convention on the Rights of the child. Despite the fact that some states have passed it into law, it is still a daunting task fighting FGM in the Southwest, Mbakwem insisted.
According to WHO, the practice of FGM enables the victims to be automatically open to various risks which may be immediate, long term, psychological, sexual functioning, or obstetric. The immediate risks the victims are exposed to include: excessive bleeding, pain, shock, genital tissue swelling, infections, wound healing problems, as well as death. The victims are still exposed to long term risks which may include: genital tissue damage, vaginal discharge and itching, menstrual problems, chronic genital infections, reproductive tract infections, urinary tract infections, keloids and cyst.
These victims are not exempted from the risks in childbirth which may include: prolonged labour, post-partum haemorrhage, still birth and early neonatal death, caesarean section, extended maternal stay, episiotomy, etc.
Apart from the physical risks the victims are exposed to, they can also be affected psychologically. They can be depressed, have anxiety disorder, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Minister Of Health Condoles With Family Of Hauwa Liman


Chioma Umeha

Prof. Isaac Adewole, the Minister of Health, has commiserated with the family of Hauwa Liman, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) humanitarian worker murdered by Boko Haram.
A statement signed By Mrs. Boade Akinola, Director, Media and Public Relations, Tuesday, said; “The Honourable Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole has commiserated with the family of Hauwa Liman, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) humanitarian worker murdered by Boko Haram.”
Professor Adewole, who described the murder as callous and unfortunate, said the health workers should not be a target in any conflict zone as they are recognised as humanitarian service providers.
He prayed for the repose of her soul and called on Boko Haram to follow the rules of International engagement which respect the right of humanitarian workers in conflict zones.

Nurses Must Embrace Professional Core Values – Idris


Chioma Umeha

Dr. Jide Idris, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, has tasked nurses in the State health sector on the need to embrace the core values of the nursing profession in the care of patients.
Idris gave this charge today during the 2018 Nurses Assembly, a programme sponsored by the Lagos State Government to update nurses, midwives and educators in Lagos on professional guidelines and policies affecting the profession.
He noted that nurses are integral part of the think-tank of the State government who contribute a lot to formulation and implementation of policies in the health sector.
Idris who was represented by Dr. Funmilayo Shokunbi, the Director, Medical Administration, Training and Programmes in the Ministry of Health, implored nurses to continue to exude professionalism, discipline, integrity, humility, selflessness and great care in the discharge of noble duties.
Earlier in her remarks, Mrs. Dorcas Shonibare, the Director of Nursing Services in the Lagos State Ministry of Health, stated that the Nurses Assembly is an annual event sponsored by the Ministry of Health to update nurses on current trends in the profession and serve as a platform for nurses to interact as professionals.
She explained that the theme of this year’s assembly “Nursing Accountability in the 21st Century” as a follow up to last year’s theme “Professionalism: A Roadmap for Ethical Compliance in Nursing” is a starting point for major strategic planning for a new perspective on ethics of the profession.
“Accountability is the acknowledgement and assumption of responsibility for actions, products, decisions and policies including the administration, governance and implementation within the scope of the role or employment position and encompassing the obligation to report, explain and be answerable for resulting consequence,” Shonibare said.
She stated that the recent launch of 12 patients’ Bill of Right championed by the Consumers Protection Council (CPC) and the Federal Ministry of Health is a wakeup call to the Health Sector in Nigeria thus bringing to fore the need for nurses to be fully updated as ignorance is no excuse.
“Patients are now empowered to demand for their rights and you must be ready to give explanation for your actions and intentions without having the erroneous belief that they are at your mercy,” she said.
Shonibare while encouraging nurses to have an orientation of being accountable stated that the practice of nursing services in Lagos State is being monitored in public and private health facilities by the Lagos State Health Facilities Monitoring and Accreditation Agency (HEFAMAA).
During her lecture on 21st Century Nurse Manager, Mrs. Helen Mbonu, the Group Director of Nursing Services Reddington Hospital, stated that a 21st century nurse manager must be a great communicator employing frequent, timely and problem-solving communication to ensure patient care is running smoothly.
She added that nurses in the 21st century should know the rudiments of teamwork and the need to build effective teams, remain positive and be decisive, be technologically driven and should be conversant with the use of modern equipment in health service delivery.
“A 21st Century Nurse Manager should be academically driven, have the right attitude, possess excellent customer service skills, be involved in policy making, understand finance and budget and be readily available and accessible,” Mbonu said.

Thursday, 18 October 2018

Minister Of Health Condoles With Family Of Hauwa Liman


Chioma Umeha

Prof. Isaac Adewole, the Minister of Health, has commiserated with the family of Hauwa Liman, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) humanitarian worker murdered by Boko Haram.
A statement signed By Mrs. Boade Akinola, Director, Media and Public Relations, Tuesday, said; “The Honourable Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole has commiserated with the family of Hauwa Liman, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) humanitarian worker murdered by Boko Haram.”
Professor Adewole, who described the murder as callous and unfortunate, said the health workers should not be a target in any conflict zone as they are recognised as humanitarian service providers.
He prayed for the repose of her soul and called on Boko Haram to follow the rules of International engagement which respect the right of humanitarian workers in conflict zones.

Nurses Must Embrace Professional Core Values – Idris


Chioma Umeha 
Dr. Jide Idris, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, has tasked nurses in the State health sector on the need to embrace the core values of the nursing profession in the care of patients.
Idris gave this charge today during the 2018 Nurses Assembly, a programme sponsored by the Lagos State Government to update nurses, midwives and educators in Lagos on professional guidelines and policies affecting the profession.
He noted that nurses are integral part of the think-tank of the State government who contribute a lot to formulation and implementation of policies in the health sector.
Idris who was represented by Dr. Funmilayo Shokunbi, the Director, Medical Administration, Training and Programmes in the Ministry of Health, implored nurses to continue to exude professionalism, discipline, integrity, humility, selflessness and great care in the discharge of noble duties.
Earlier in her remarks, Mrs. Dorcas Shonibare, the Director of Nursing Services in the Lagos State Ministry of Health, stated that the Nurses Assembly is an annual event sponsored by the Ministry of Health to update nurses on current trends in the profession and serve as a platform for nurses to interact as professionals.
She explained that the theme of this year’s assembly “Nursing Accountability in the 21st Century” as a follow up to last year’s theme “Professionalism: A Roadmap for Ethical Compliance in Nursing” is a starting point for major strategic planning for a new perspective on ethics of the profession.
“Accountability is the acknowledgement and assumption of responsibility for actions, products, decisions and policies including the administration, governance and implementation within the scope of the role or employment position and encompassing the obligation to report, explain and be answerable for resulting consequence,” Shonibare said.
She stated that the recent launch of 12 patients’ Bill of Right championed by the Consumers Protection Council (CPC) and the Federal Ministry of Health is a wakeup call to the Health Sector in Nigeria thus bringing to fore the need for nurses to be fully updated as ignorance is no excuse.
“Patients are now empowered to demand for their rights and you must be ready to give explanation for your actions and intentions without having the erroneous belief that they are at your mercy,” she said.
Shonibare while encouraging nurses to have an orientation of being accountable stated that the practice of nursing services in Lagos State is being monitored in public and private health facilities by the Lagos State Health Facilities Monitoring and Accreditation Agency (HEFAMAA).
During her lecture on 21st Century Nurse Manager, Mrs. Helen Mbonu, the Group Director of Nursing Services Reddington Hospital, stated that a 21st century nurse manager must be a great communicator employing frequent, timely and problem-solving communication to ensure patient care is running smoothly.
She added that nurses in the 21st century should know the rudiments of teamwork and the need to build effective teams, remain positive and be decisive, be technologically driven and should be conversant with the use of modern equipment in health service delivery.
“A 21st Century Nurse Manager should be academically driven, have the right attitude, possess excellent customer service skills, be involved in policy making, understand finance and budget and be readily available and accessible,” Mbonu said.



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