Showing posts from February 21, 2016

Coalition of CSOs, professionals deliberate on 2016 health budget

•Calls for increase funding, timely release Paucity of funds that is rocking major institutions in the country and have been taken crippling effect on proper health care delivery would soon nosedive to public health crisis, unless there is urgent government’s intervention in strengthening of health care financing as concerns 2016 budget. Raising the concern on Tuesday, were stakeholders, experts and civil society organisations who decried the continued absence of budgetary provisions for key and essential line items for child and family health, even in the highly debated 2016 budget. The group expressed grave concerns over what it considers a disparagingly rising low health budget, indices in the country as well as the missing N60 billion in the 2016 budget, equivalent of one per cent of consolidated revenue guaranteed by the National Health Act to fund basic health. These were part of the issues which took centre stage at a workshop on 2016 budget with regards to healthcare,

Beware, that painful menstruation could be endometriosis

Each month, Titi Delani, aged 17, undergraduate, often misses her lectures at least for two days because of complaints from painful menses. Worse still, the pain relieving drugs recommended by her doctor could not ameliorate the situation. Titi as she is fondly called represent millions of women and girls, who are monthly, trapped by the debilitating disorder, medically termed – endometriosis. Simply put, endometriosis is related to the excruciating pains that some women experience during menstrual flows. How many times have your wife, sisters, daughters, granddaughters and great grand daughters have had to skip work, business or social functions and even school because of menstrual pains that have defied pain relief medication? The name which is jaw-breaking is not also common, but the symptoms are rampant. One in every 10 women of reproductive ages, suffers symptoms of the health disorder, which is inexplicably unknown to several people. Even some of those in the med

Group laments poor health sector budget allocation

… Questions revenue leakages The Civil Society Legislation Advocacy Centre (CISLAC)’s attention has been drawn to the persistent nation’s revenue leakages and sharp reduction in the 2016 budgetary allocation to health sector, despite the rising challenges confronting child and family health in the country. A recent report by Tax Justice and Governance Network (TJ&GN) reveals that revenue leakage arising from corporate tax incentives granted multinational companies after the end of initial five-year tax break has cost Nigeria billions of dollars, disclosing Nigeria lost over US$20 billion to tax fraud evolving from incentives between 2010 and 2014. The corporate tax incentives in the analysis of Tax Justice Network Africa, include reduction in corporate income tax, rates and tax ‘holidays’ offered by governments to investors for specified periods, to attract new foreign direct investment by companies operating in special economic zones. A cross section of particip

Improved policies, critical to curtailing female genital mutilation – Idris

Improved guidelines, trainings and policies to ensure health professionals can provide counseling to young girls and women has been highlighted as a major solution to the challenge of female genital mutilation in Nigeria. This concerned was expressed by the Commissioner for Health Lagos State, Dr. Jide Idris during a review of the family health programmes of the State. He disclosed that female genital mutilation is a socio-cultural practice that is hazardous and mostly done by traditional circumcisers. He pointed out that the act is usually very harmful to the health of women since it can lead to urinary tract problems, tetanus infection, severe bleeding, cysts, genital swelling, complications during child births and increased risk of neonatal death. According to the Commissioner, “Female genital mutilation or intentional alteration of the genital for non-medical reasons does not have any health benefit as wrongly believed by the proponents, it does not reduce libido i

… Pregnant woman disappears from home to avoid exercise

Following the insistence of an Islamic cleric that his pregnant wife undergoes circumcision after childbirth, the embattled wife has gone into hiding. The 29 years old woman was said to be hiding at yet to be identified location in a suburb of Lagos, Lagos State. Investigation indicated that the lady, simply identified as Rukayat Tairu, was at the time of the incident had disappeared from her matrimonial home for the fear of being forced to undergo the painful circumcision process. Exercises for pregnant women Findings also show that she had earlier had a child for her first husband who happened to be a Christian which the parents were opposed to. But on getting to the new husband, he insisted that she must be circumcised according to the Islamic injunction. According to close family sources, the lady will have to go through the circumcision after the delivery of her child. Born into Islamic religion family, Rukayat, it was learnt had opted to embrace Christian rel

JOHESU, AHPA threaten to embark on strike over unfulfilled demands

… Issues 15-day ultimatum To press home their demand, the Joint Health Sector Unions, JOHESU and the Assembly of Healthcare Professionals, AHPA, have issued a 15-day ultimatum from February 3, 2016 to the Federal government to pay attention to their demands or face an industrial action. In a statement made available to NEWSWATCH TIMES, JOHESU/AHPA which is a coalition of unions constitutes 95 per cent of healthcare providers in the health Industry nationwide. The statement said that JOHESU is made up of five registered Unions in the health sector namely; Medical and Health Workers’ Union of Nigeria (MHWUN), National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNM), Senior Staff Association of Universities, Teaching Hospitals, Research Institutes and Associated Institutions (SSAUTHRIAI), Nigeria Union of Allied Health Professionals (NUAHP), Non-Academic Staff Union of Educational and Associated Institutions (NASU). According to the statement, JOHESU’s demands includes

Nigeria risk drug insecurity as forex scarcity lingers

•Pharmacists inaugurate new boss Ahead of the inauguration of the new President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), Ahmed Yakasai, come February 18, pharmacists have warned against impending risk of drug insecurity, occasioned by absolute drought of raw materials that is active pharmaceutical ingredients in the face of scarce foreign exchange (FOREX) in the country. The pharmacists gave the warning on Wednesday, under the aegis of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) and Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (PMG-MAN), on Wednesday, insisting that if the scarcity of foreign exchange for importation of critical raw materials persists, the country may soon be plunged into drugs circulation crisis, a situation that could be dangerous to the health of the citizens. According to the new PSN boss, the looming catastrophe can only be prevented if the Federal Government should make available foreign exchange to bonafide p

Bananas can detect, cure skin cancer – Study

The black spots on old banana peels may unlock a faster, easier diagnosis of human skin cancer, boosting survival chances, scientists said Monday. When bananas ripen, their skin is covered in small, round black spots caused by an enzyme known as tyrosinase. The same enzyme is present in human skin, and in greater quantities in people suffering from melanoma — a potentially deadly form of skin cancer. A team of scientists used this observed commonality to build a cancer scanner, which they then refined and tested at length on banana peels before moving on to human tissue, an online report said Wednesday. Bananas First, researchers at the Laboratory of Physical and Analytical Electrochemistry in Switzerland concluded that the enzyme is a reliable marker of melanoma growth. In the earliest stage 1 of cancer, the enzyme is not very apparent, becoming widespread and evenly distributed in stage 2, and unevenly distributed in stage 3 — by when the cancer has started spreading to

Female Genital Mutilation: 19.9m Nigerian women endangered

As the country joined to mark the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting(FGM/C) on Saturday, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) lamented that an estimated 19.9 million Nigerian women have undergone the practice. The number approximately represents 16 per cent of 125 million FGM/C survivors globally. UNICEF’s Child Protection Specialist, Maryam Enyiazu who stated this at a two-day UNICEF media dialogue, titled: ”Media partnership towards female genital mutilation/cutting abandonment in Nigeria” noted that 82 per cent of women in Nigeria undergo FGM before age five. L-r: Gender Analyst, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Damilola Obinna; Professor Modupe Onadeko, President, Inter-African Committee on female genital mutilation (FGM) and Doune Porter, Chief of Communication, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), during a facility visit to Ife Local Government, Osun state, part of a two-day UNICEF media dialogue, “Media partnershi

Fidson Healthcare, GB Pharma unite to achieve global pharmaceutical outreach

Fidson Healthcare Plc, one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in the country, has recently made a giant leap toward addressing Nigeria’s pharmaceutical needs by entering into an agreement with the American company, GB Pharma Holdings. Their business agreement is expected to provide Fidson with the guidance it needs to establish its foothold within the US and to develop strategic relationships with other business entities. Of all these entities, US Pharmacopeia (USP) is the most critical. It will insure Fidson’s growth by helping it sustain U.S. and international standards. Founded in 1820, this scientific nonprofit organization will share with Fidson its expertise by overseeing the identity, strength, quality and purity of medicines, food ingredients and dietary supplements that Fidson will manufacture and distribute. With the support of GB Pharma Holdings, Immune Therapeutics Incorporation and American Hospitals & Resorts (AHAR), Fidson will gain from this partnershi

NAFDAC endorses four UN life-saving commodities production for women, children

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has approved the production of four United Nations life saving commodities for women and children. The commodities include: chlorhexidine gel used in neonatal umbilical cord care, amoxicillin dispersible tablet used in Pneumonia, Zinc Sulphate for diarrhoea and misoprostol. Announcing this at a two-day Common Technical Document, CTD, workshop in Lagos, the Director General of NAFDAC, Dr. Paul Orhii said Nigerians now have improved access to locally produced safe, efficacious and affordable medicines. Orhii explained that some of the drugs before now were not manufactured in the whole of Africa. Giving further insight into the life saving commodities, he explained that the agency decided to give its technical assistance towards the production of these drugs to make Nigeria self-sufficient in the manufacture and supply of quality, safe and efficacious medicines at affordable prices. Continuing he a

OMRON Healthcare introduces low cost doctor-led hypertension care

Omron Healthcare EMEA weekend, launched, a Pilot project for Omron Medical Connect, a service that enables patients to receive remote consultation and prescriptions for hypertension from cardiologists at Lagos University Teaching Hospital directly at their community pharmacy. Omron Medical Connect aims to provide patients with hypertension care in pharmacies close to their homes, reducing cost, travel time and time waiting for appointments. Omron Healthcare EMEA will recruit 500 patients to the Omron Medical Connect Pilot to demonstrate feasibility and effectiveness of this innovative healthcare delivery model. The Pilot will take place from February to October 2016 in Lagos and surrounding areas. Omron Healthcare EMEA has a global reputation for producing highly accurate blood pressure devices. However Omron’s mission is to go beyond tracking numbers to provide services that enable patients to take control of their health and live longer, healthier lives. Omron is working

Bauchi committed to five-point health agenda -Commissioner

The newly appointed Bauchi state Commissioner of Health, Dr. Halima Mukaddas has reiterated the state government commitment to the five-point agenda on health declared by Governor Muhammad Abdullahi Abubakar. The commissioner made the pledged when she received a roll-up banner containing the five point agenda from a non-governmental organisation, Community Health and Research Initiative (CHR) in her office. Dr. Halima said the ministry will support to agenda by including its contents to the ministry’s health operational plan. She expressed sincere gratitude for the banner presented to her and assured the advocacy team that she will always make sure certain activities to be carried out are in line with the five point’s agenda, developed by the state governor last year. She said the administration has so far shown utmost zeal and passion to address health gaps in the state, as the governor’s drive to improve the health of the people in the state will be reflected positiv