2,300 children under the age of 5 years die every day in Nigeria. The health of our children is in serious jeopardy as our children die needlessly from various preventable diseases.
Dr. Ejiro Ogono a Paediatrician at Abel Guobadia Special Clinic noted this in a one day Public Health Education Seminar put together by the Women’s Health and Action Research Centre (WHARC) in conjunction with Abel Guobadia Specialist Clinic on Tuesday August 25, 2015.
The Deputy Executive Director of WHARC Dr. Wilson Imongan said that the lecture entitled, ‘‘Conversations with Senior Doctors Promoting the Health and Social well-being of the Nigerian Child’’, was to educate parents on how to care for their children and to make them stay healthy by offering free de-worming and growth monitoring for children in Benin City’’.
The Paediatrician said that ‘‘health is a physical, social and emotional well being of an individual’’. The child expert gave a statistics of children’s death under the age of 5 years in Sub-Saharan Africa as 6.3million with 2,300 children under the age of 5 years die every day in Nigeria. The deaths of newborn babies make up about one quarter of these deaths.
He however identified diarrhoea, malaria, pneumonia, measles, HIV/AIDS, malnutrition, tetanus, non-exclusive breastfeeding and non-optimal breast feeding as the major causes of deaths in children.
He noted 3million deaths for diarrhoea worldwide, 270million deaths for malaria worldwide and that Nigeria has the highest percentage HIV disease burden in the world. He started that lack of ante-natal care as the major cause of HIV/AIDS transmission from mother to child.
Dr. Ogono encourage mothers to cultivate good hygiene habit (hand washing), intensive and exclusive breast feeding for 6 months, optimal breast feeding for 2 years with baby food, clean boiled water as drinking water for babies, ORS when babies are dehydrating, prevent the transmission of HIV disease from mother to baby, the use of insecticide or treated mosquito nets to prevent malaria, maintaining clean environment and prompt clinic check up for children.
Children are the future of any great nation he therefore encouraged parents to strive and give them the best so they can become the leaders of tomorrow.