WORLD NTDs DAY: SIGHTSAVERS COMMENDS KWARA'S INITIATIVE

Kwara State Government, through the Public Health Department of the State's Ministry of Health, joined the rest of the world to mark the 3rd World Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) Day.

The  Commissioner for Health, Dr Raji Razaq, who delivered a keynote address at the event held at the Ministry of Health headquarters at Fate, Ilorin, emphasized that the NTDs Day like other specially dedicated days are used as opportunities to sensitize the public and draw attention of policymakers to thematic issues around such days.

 In this case, he said it is about issues bedeviling the health of all citizens, especially as it concerns some group of neglected diseases in the tropics like filariasis, worm infestation, snake bites amongst many others.

Dr. Raji  said about 2 million people living in Kwara State are at risk of contracting one or two of the long list of over 20 various forms of health challenges that have been grouped as NTDs.

He, however, revealed that  the Kwara State NTDs Control and Elimination Programme achieved her set targets for the outgone year, in spite of limitations posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

"1500 teachers were trained for the deworming of 406,000 School Aged Children (SAC), 800 Community Health Workers and 4,600 Community Directed Distributors (CDDs) were trained for the treatment of over 2 million Kwarans with drugs to prevent blinding diseases. 

"the State Government had also provided anti-snake venom for free administration to patients with snake bites, he said.

The Programme Manager for NTDs in the state, Mr. Peter Oyinloye, while answering questions,  highlighted the renewed attention given by this administration to NTDs and the collaborative support of the major partner, Sightsavers, in touching lives and alleviating challenges faced from its complications. 

The representative of Sightsavers, Mr Olalekan Ajayi expressed delight in working as a partner in Kwara State and specifically with the NTDs unit of the Public health department. 

Ajayi described the state government's funding of free surgical intervention as a means of taking ownership of the Kwara/Partners initiatives. 

He prayed that Kwara state will be NTDs free by Year 2030, especially since government is now getting it right in the health sector.

Falade Gbenga Tayo
Press Sec.
Kwara State Ministry of Health.

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