Enugu Govt , SEPAT Pharmaceuticals Ltd commence free screening of viral hepatitis B,C

Enugu State ministry of Health in collaboration with SEPAT pharmaceuticals Limited , Tuesday, March 19, commenced free screening of viral  hepatitis B and C to fight the spread of the diseases in the state, urging residents to avail themselves of tbe opportunity to know their status and get help where needed.

Performing the launch at the Enugu State Teaching Hospital, ESUT Parklane,  the state Commissioner for Health, Prof. Emmanuel Ikechukwu Obi commended the state Governor, Dr. Peter Mbah’ for approving the program in the state .

He said hepatitis is a viral disease that affects the liver, describing liver as ” a very major  engine of the human body”.

Pix- The CMD, Prof Ugwu being screened at the event

Prof Obi explained that health is “a continuous adjustment to physical,  social  and mental stimulus and not just the approach of disease. He added  that “the effort every government should have is an effort towards health promotion and Enugu state  Governor, Dr. Peter Mbah’ has recognised that and he is pushing it through the ministry of Health.

” What we are doing here today is giving an opportunity  to the people of Enugu state to make a decision to take control  over the determinants of their health. Part of it is knowledge. If  you know that  you are  positive of hepatitis you can make the right choice. You  can make the right choice to know the things you can avoid, you can make the right choice to know the drugs you go after, and you can make the right choice to even speak to others about the necessity of knowing. So, the good people of Enugu state we are saying that the government of today is interested in the health of ndi Enugu and that is the reason why such event is taking place”, Obi said .

Pix- Commissioner For Health , Prof Obi

The Commissioner thanked SEPAT for the collaboration. He said the free viral screening program will be launched  concurrently across the three senatorial zones of the state between 19th -24Th March ,2024. The Commissioner  assured that the report will be made opened  and the data collected will be used for planing.

In his welcome address, the Chief Medical Director, ESUT , Park Lane ,Prof  Bertrand  Ugwu ,advised people to avoid anything that can affect the liver negatively.. He said Hepatitis is categorized into A, B, C, D and E , adding that  B and C can lead to liver cancer and no man who has cancer can survive it.  

Prof Ugwu said it is  chronic and one can live with it for 20 years without knowing he has it , hence,  the need for the  screening

Pix- CMD,Prof Ugwu

In his speech, the managing Director of SEPAT Pharmaceuticals ,Dr. Pat Orama, said they initiated the programme because they wanted to replicate what happened in Egypt  in Nigeria.. He urged people to do the free screening inorder to know their status, adding that they have cure for hepatitis C and the treatment is given at a subsidized rate.

Pix- Dr. Orama

Focal Person of Phamco Pharmaceuticals, Constance Nnadozie also spoke at the event.

Pix- Nnadozie

Earlier, the Director,  Public Health, Dr. Uche Okenwa, said the free screening will be done in 18 health facilities, 2 from each of the selected three local government areas of the state. For Enugu North senatorial zone , Udenu, Igbo-Etiti and Nsukka were chosen. In Enugu East senatorial zone, Enugu North Local Government Area, Enugu  East L. G .A and Enugu South L.G.A were selected , while in Enugu West senatorial zone, Awgu, Oji- River and Udi local government areas were also selected.

Pix- Dr Okenwa

According to him, the free screening program targeted mainly pregnant women and people at the General Out- patient department. 

He said Hepatitis B has a preventive measure, it has a vaccine and have no cure for now, while, hepatitis C has a cure.

He said  the activities in the three senatorial zones will enable the state government to do a study on hepatitis B and C to determine the prevalence. of the diseases in Enugu state. He said the study  will be documented for references.

Author: Maureen Ikpeama

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *