Major health stories last week

Cholera patients in hospital ward
Cholera patients in hospital ward [FILE PHOTO]

HMO seeks policies to achieve universal health coverage

Patrick Korie, Chief Executive Officer, Managed Healthcare Services, a Health Maintenance Organisation (HMO) has urged Federal Government to adopt strategies and policies that would enable the nation to achieve Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

Mr Korie said UHC aims at ensuring that all people have access to needed healthcare services including preventive, promotion, treatment, rehabilitation and palliative care irrespective of financial status.

He identified such enabling policies as strong political will, proper healthcare governance and funding the National Health Act.

Mr Korie also lamented that the none inclusion of the all citizens in the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), describing the gap as an infringement on the fundamental human rights of citizens.

New anti-mosquito net boosts malaria protection

A trial by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine involving 15,000 children in Tanzania has found that using a bed net treated with piperonyl butoxide reduced malaria infections by 44 percent in the first year compared to nets only treated with pyrethroid.

The result of the trial has boosted hopes of protecting more people from the killer disease.

The study comes amid concerns that mosquitoes’ ability to resist insecticides is evolving rapidly and spreading across Africa where tools such as insecticide-treated bed nets and insecticide spraying have helped cut malaria cases since 2000.

The trial prompted the World Health Organization (WHO) to revise its recommendations and back wider use of nets sprayed with piperonyl butoxide in areas in Africa where mosquitoes are pyrethroid resistant.

One night of bad sleep can lead to Alzheimer ‘s Disease: Scientists

New research suggests that a single night of sleep deprivation can increase levels of beta-amyloid protein involved in the making of Alzheimer’s disease.

The discovery was made by scientists from the American National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA).

Study co-author Nora D. Volkow, of the Laboratory of Neuroimaging at the NIAAA, and colleagues recently published their findings in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive cognitive disorder characterised by memory loss and changes in behaviour. It is the most common form of dementia, affecting around 5.7 million adults in the United States alone.

Kaduna Government upgrades 77 PHCs

The Kaduna State Government says it has upgraded 77 Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs) across the state in the last three years.

The government, in a score card issued during the 1st Quarter interactive forum with Kaduna State Accountability Mechanism (KADMAM), said 255 PHCs were proposed for renovation and upgrade.

It showed that contract for renovation and upgrading of 86 PHCs was given to the northern senatorial zone, but only 33 of the 86 were completed. In Kudan Local Government Area, contract for 10 PHCs was awarded but only five was completed, with Ikara 10 and 2 completed while in Kubau, 11 were awarded but only five was completed.

Others were six PHCs in Zaria out of the 13 awarded, Lere two out of 11, Sabongari three out of the 10 awarded, while Birnin Gwari recorded three out of the 11 awarded.

Group donates $40 million medical supplies to Nigeria – Official

MedShare, a U.S.-based non-profit organization, says it has donated more than $40 million worth of new medical supplies and biomedical equipment to strengthen Nigeria’s healthcare systems in the last 20 years.

Vice-President, International Development of MedShare, Nell Diallo, disclosed this at the Nigeria Day at Atlanta to celebrate MedShare’s 20 years of strengthening healthcare in Nigeria.

Ms Diallo said: “MedShare has supported over 150 hospitals in Nigeria and improved maternal and child health, primary care and infectious disease control and prevention in Nigeria’s healthcare facilities.

“MedShare has donated more than $40 million in medical supplies and biomedical equipment to strengthen Nigeria’s health systems”.

Three dead as cholera ravages Borno community

No fewer than three persons died in fresh cholera outbreak in Kukawa Local Government Area of Borno, the Commissioner for Health, Haruna Mshelia, has said.

Mr Mshelia made the disclosure when the Director General, World Health Organisation (WHO), Tedros Ghebrayesus, visited the WHO’s Emergency and Response Centre on Friday in Maiduguri.

He said that about 700 cases of cholera were recorded in Baga, Doron Baga and Kukawa in the past weeks.

He said that the state government, in collaboration with WHO and other partner agencies had scaled up activities to combat the outbreak in the affected communities.

Nigeria should improve investment in health – WHO DG

The World Health Organisation, Director-General, Tedros Ghebreyesus, has advised Nigeria to speed up the investment of one per cent of its Consolidation Funds intended for basic health provision.

Mr Ghebreyesus, who gave this advice at the second THISDAY media parley, said the organisation’s new five-year strategic plan sets a target to see one billion more people with access to Universal Health Coverage (UHC) by 2023.

According to him, more than half of the world’s population lack access to essential health services, “and almost 100 million people are pushed into extreme poverty every year because of the costs of paying for care out of their own pockets.”

He said implementing UHC means much more than just health insurance, “it means much more than just healthcare.”

U.S. recalls 200 million eggs over food poisoning

To avoid any possible outbreak of salmonella, a bacterium that can cause food poisoning and typhoid fever, no fewer than 200 million eggs are being recalled in the United States (U.S.).

Rose Acre Farms of Seymour, Ind., is voluntarily recalling the eggs due to possible contamination with the bacteria.

According to the Food and Drug Administration, 22 illnesses have been reported so far and the egg recall is the largest in the United States since 2010.

Salmonella can cause serious and even deadly infections in children or elderly adults. Symptoms include fever, diarrhoea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain.

Coronavirus factsheet


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