Federal government, U.S. sign MoU on HIV, Hepatitis B, C survey
Minister, govs’ wives laud firm on medicine to boost cancer treatment
The Federal Government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the United States (U.S.) to conduct national health indicator and impact survey to determine the accurate number of people infected with HIV in Nigeria.
The survey, which will be the largest HIV research to be conducted in the whole world, will involve 170,000 people, gulp about $90 million and house-hold in nature.It will also cover Hepatitis B and C and will also assess the uptake of HIV services among the population and estimate the prevalence of HIV related risks behaviour in the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, who spoke yesterday during the signing of the MoU in Abuja, said the survey would put behind the concept of making guess work out of the burden of HIV in Nigeria.He said: “We simply do not know how many people are infected with HIV and so this study will help us to determine how many people truly have HIV in Nigeria.”
Meanwhile, while the U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, Stuart Symington, urged Nigerians to embrace and support the survey to improve the health of Nigerians, Director-General of the National Agency for Control of AIDS (NACA), Dr. Aliyu Sani, said the signing of the MoU would likely be a major landmark for the HIV response in the country.
In another development, the health minister and wife of Oyo State governor, Dr. Florence Ajimobi, have lauded Swiss multinational firm, Roche, for the launch of its innovative medicine, Herceptin SC, for the treatment of breast cancer in Nigeria.
The wife of Niger State governor, Dr. Amina Abubakar Bello, also commended the firm for the launching of the drug.They made the commendation yesterday during the launch of the medicine in Lagos, which also had in attendance partners and stakeholders in the health sector.
Adewole, represented by the Chief Medical Director, National Orthopaedic Hospital, Igbobi, Lagos, Dr. Mustapha Alimi, said the Swiss firm had been at the frontline of developing medicines to reduce the prevalence of cancer in Nigeria, which is in line with the National Cancer Control Plan (NCCP) 2018-2022 that seeks to address dangers, treatment and every aspect of cancer management to improve quality of life of patients.
The Country Manager, Roche Nigeria, Oladipupo Hameed, who spoke on the medicine and its efficacy, said the firm believes that every cancer patient in Nigeria deserves the same treatment as those in other developed countries of the world, adding that the launch of Herceptin SC is a testament to that belief.
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