Succour for sickle cell patients as foundation offers free medicare
By Anayo Okoli
UMUAHIA—SUCCOUR has come the way of people living with the dreaded sickle cell anemia in Abia State as the wife of Abia State Governor, Mrs. Nkechi Ikpeazu through the pet project, Vicar Hope Foundation, provided a weekly free medical services and health talk for them at the the ultra-modern Sickle Cell Diagnosis and Treatment Centre, Umuahia.
The weekly programme, every Wednesday, is being handled by medical personnel, including doctor, nurses as well as counselors who enlighten the patients on the best way to manage the illness.
The centre which was recently commissioned by the wife of the President, Mrs. Aisha Buhari will provide opportunities for the patients; mainly children were brought by their parents, on how to manage the illness and live a normal life.
Addressing the maiden session of the health enlightenment, wife of Abia State Governor, Mrs. Nkechi Ikpeazu described sickle cell anemia as “the most neglected but a great killer”, encouraged the sickle cell anemia patients to always take their drugs and adhere to care advice given to them by doctors.
According to Mrs. Nkechi Ikpeazu whose project, Vicar Hope Foundation runs the Centre, if the sickle cell patients “eat right and do right”, they would live a very normal life. She said that the Foundation embarked on the medical programme because of the plight of people living with sickle cell anemia.
Mrs. Ikpeazu told them that with strict adherence to the doctor’s advice and proper administration of the drugs, people living with sickle cell anemia would live a normal life.
She explained that Vicar Hope Foundation decided to take up issues relating to sickle cell anemia in order to encourage and give hope to the patients.
The centre, she explained would enlighten the patients on how to manage the illness as it has no cure, so that they could live normal life. The centre will also carry out genotype test to guide the people.
Mrs. Ikpeazu said that her foundation would take the enlightenment down to the rural communities through churches to make the people know that sickle cell patients can still live normal life if they manage themselves well.
She also hinted that the enlightenment programme for sickle cell patients would form a major part of the issues to be discussed during next month’s Women August conference in the State.
Giving the patients hope, the medical team led by Dr. Godswill Ogbonnaya told them to always eat right and properly administer the drugs. They however, warned them not marry anybody with SS genotype “no matter how strong the love is”.
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