By Ebele Egoh : In a bid to improve the healthcare of the people, Anambra state government has embarked on de–worming exercise of all the school children in the state ranging from 1 to15 years as it targets 2.5 million children. Also, vitamin A supplements will be administered to children 0 to 4 years in all public and private primary schools and junior secondary schools across 177 communities in the state.
The wife of the Governor, Mrs Ebelechukwu Obiano, during the flag–off of the de-worming campaign at Central School Isuaniocha, Awka North Local Government Area advised mothers to take the exercise seriously and cultivate the habit of de-worming their children regularly. Mrs Obiano also encouraged mothers and care givers to give their children/wards
Addressing journalists in his office, the state commissioner for health, Dr. Joe Akabuike stated that regular de-worming of children will reduce the rate of stunted growth, improve the absorption rate of nutrients by 80 percent and promote the general wellbeing of the children. According to Akabuike, “malnutrition is the major cause of high incidence of stunted growth and underweight among children and these have negative and irreversible impact on cognitive development and general productivity’’. He remarked that “vitamin A is involved in regulating the growth and specialisation of virtually all cells in the human body and it has important roles in embryonic development, organ formation during foetal development, normal immune functions and eye development and vision’’.
The de-worming exercise marked a milestone in the health care delivery of the Obiano administration ‘‘who through the State Ministry of Health in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of health and the Vitamin Angel’s support is organising the first ever state wide de-worming exercise for our children”, Dr. Akabuike noted