Top Health Stories Last Week: Banned drugs on sale, more women demand CS

By: Gina Kennedy

Top Health Stories Last Week: Banned drugs on sale, more women demand CS Top Health Stories Last Week: Banned drugs on sale, more women demand CS Nigerian Senate. SENATE INVESTIGATES 42 ‘BANNED’ ANTI-MALARIA DRUGS The Nigerian Senate said it would investigate reports of 42 anti-malaria drugs banned by the European Union, EU, but which are still in circulation in the country. The EU reportedly banned these drugs as a result of their effect on health, including causing kidney failure.

One of the banned drugs is Artesunate which is widely used in Nigerian households.   WOMEN INCREASINGLY DEMAND CAESAREAN SECTION The Caesarean Section (CS) option in child delivery is becoming popular among Nigerian women, a survey reveals. The survey across some South West states and Kwara indicates that the increasing popularity of the procedure was hinged on factors ranging from medical reasons to social considerations as well as unethical motive to make profit. Ijarotimi Omotade, a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynaecology and Perinatology, Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital, Ile-Ife, said CS could be justified whenever it was deemed that the life of the mother or foetus could be in jeopardy if vaginal delivery was allowed; however, the CS rate was on the increase worldwide and remains a cause for concern considering the risks associated with the procedure.   SCIENTISTS RELEASE 20 MILLION MOSQUITOES Scientists in California are releasing 20 million mosquitoes in an effort to shrink the population of mosquitoes that can carry diseases.

Millions of sterile male mosquitoes will be released which will then mate with wild female mosquitoes. The eggs the females lay won’t hatch, researchers say. The project is called Debug Fresno and is being undertaken by Verily, a subsidiary of Alphabet, Google’s holding company. The goal is to cut the population of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes — the species responsible for spreading Zika, dengue and chikungunya. Aegypti which have been present in California’s Central Valley since 2013 and have been a problem in Fresno County.

JAPAN RENOVATES PHC IN ABUJA The Japanese Government has handed over a 15-bed capacity clinic, fully equipped with solar powered panels, to Shere Community in Bwari Area Council, FCT, to strengthen healthcare system in the community. Sadanobu Kusaoke, Ambassador of Japan to Nigeria while inaugurating the facility, said the project was designed to provide appropriate and reliable healthcare services to the community. He said the primary healthcare facility, which is the only one in the community, was in a deplorable condition with just a nurse, in spite the large population of the community. ENUGU EMPLOYS 291 HEALTH WORKERS The Enugu State government engaged the services of 291 health workers to monitor and minimise patterns of spread of diseases in all the political wards in the state. The Director of Public Health Services, Okechukwu Ossai, said the workers would also report incidences of disease outbreaks to 88 focal sites for disease surveillance in the state.   He explained that the government extended its network on disease surveillance to check the practice of self-medication and unconventional treatments for diseases that could be a threat to others in communities.

Top Health Stories Last Week: Banned drugs on sale, more women demand CS

ARTIST STAGES EXHIBITION TO RAISE AWARENESS ON HEPATITIS B Photos from art exhibition to raise awareness on Hepatitis B An art exhibition to raise awareness about Hepatitis B and raise funds for vaccines for people in Durumi IDP Camp for World Hepatitis Day on July 28 was held in Abuja. We are convinced that we can positively use art to sensitize people to social issues, said Tola Ijaiya, the organiser, contributing artist to the exhibit, and founder of May Palette organisation which hosted the event. Hepatitis B is a virus which inflames the liver, and is said to be more deadly and more common than HIV. Like HIV, Hepatitis B yet has no cure. The virus spreads through simple contact with bodily fluids, such as sweat, semen, blood etc. Of an infected person.

MAKE DIARRHOEA DRUGS AVAILABLE IN PUBLIC HOSPITALS Nigerian state governments have been urged to make Zinc and Low-osmolarity (Lo-ORS) drugs available in public health facilities in Nigeria. Zinc tablets and ORS are drugs used for the treatment of diarrhoea in infants and children. In 2012, diarrhoea was one of the top three killers of children under the age of five years in Nigeria, causing approximately 100,000 deaths. The World Health Organization recommended the use of Lo-ORS to treat the disease in infants and under five children. CHOLERA DEATH TOLL RISES IN KWARA Patients in hospital ward [FILE PHOTO] Seventeen persons have been confirmed dead in 1,617 reported suspected cases as cholera outbreak continues to ravage Kwara State in North-central Nigeria. The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, disclosed in its weekly epidemiological report for week 26 that the suspected cases were reported as at the end July 9 with 13 laboratory samples confirming the disease and a case fatality rate of 1.1 per cent recorded.   This is an increase of 3.6 per cent suspected cases from the previous week’s epidemiological report where 1. 558 suspected cases were reported, 13 confirmed and 11 deaths recorded.

Children under the age of five remain the most affected with 460, (28.4 per cent) of the cases reported with the male population accounting for 51.6 per cent of the cases. WHO WARNS OF HIV DRUG RESISTANCE HIV Ribbon The World Health Organisation, WHO, has warned that the spread of an HIV strain resistant to some of the most widely used medicines could undermine global progress in treating and preventing HIV infection if early and effective action is not taken. The Director-General of WHO, Tedros Ghebreyesus, stated this in the WHO HIV Drug Resistance Report 2017. According to him, in six of the 11 countries surveyed in Africa, Asia and Latin America, more than 10 per cent of people starting antiretroviral therapy had a strain that was resistant to some of the most widely used medicines.

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