From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna
A new ground has been broken in the fight against the sickle cell disease in Nigeria with the new partnership agreement entered into by a UK-based Ade Adebisi Sickle Cell Foundation and an NGO, the Sickle Cell Patient Health Promotion Centre Kaduna.
In the words of Mr. Ade Adebis “The need to provide proper medication, hope, support and succour for the people suffering from this disease is the brain behind the partnership”
Speaking further, he said the main goal of this partnership is to build a health centre mainly for sickle cell patients, which would be equipped with modern technologies for fighting sickle cell ailment.
He said for patients who could not reach the city centre a mobile clinic would be provided to meet the health needs of the rural dwellers.
Mr. Adebisi who was a sickle cell patient himself, overcame the challenge and later turned an international Rugby player, where he represented England in the Rugby World cup and played for several Rugby clubs in the UK.
He said he was giving the support to overcome the challenge of sickle cell and if he can play Rugby he believed with the right support every sickle cell patient can do everything.
He said “what these people need is a mental support and not pity the society should support these ones to overcome their challenges by believing in their abilities”
On her part Hajiya Badiya, the founder of the Sickle Cell Patient Health Promotion Centre said for the past 7 years her organisation has catered for the health needs of over 3000 sickle cell patients by
providing them with free drugs and other supports and that with this new partnership it can only be bettered.
She said this partnership would bring to realization her dream of getting to the rural areas to provide help for Sickle Cell patients, especially now that her new partner has promised to donate a mobile clinic.
She added that though her operational office is within Kaduna state, but patients from various states of the federation are coming to access their health facilities.
Speaking earlier Dr. Fatima Jaafar Yahaya of the Paediatrics centre of the Barau Dikko Specialist Hospital said though the challenge of Sickle Cell is much around in Kaduna State, but the government is making efforts to curtail the challenges.
He said the government has 3 dedicated clinics for the fight against sickle cell across the 3 senatorial districts; in Zaria, Kafanchan and Kaduna town.