Nigeria: 2.5m children for de-worming in Anambra state
The Anambra Government is to de-worm over 2.5 million pre-school and school age children from Dec. 7 to Dec. 9, an official said on Saturday. Dr Joe Akabuike, the state Commissioner for Health, made this known to newsmen in Awka, saying that the exercise would cover children aged one to 15 years.
He said that the exercise would be flagged-off by Gov. Willie Obiano of Anambra at the Central School, Isi-Anaocha in Awka North Local Government Area. The commissioner said that the state-wide exercise would hold in all public and private primary and junior secondary schools to achieve the desired objectives. He said that the exercise was aimed at reducing worm loads on children and enhances their health. According to him, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends periodic treatment with anthelminthic (de-worming) medicines, without previous individual diagnosis to pre-school and school age living in endemic areas. “Treatment should be given once a year when the prevalence of soil-transmitted helminth infections in a community is about 20 per cent and twice a year when the prevalence of soil-transmitted helminth infections in the community exceeds 50 per cent. “The regular de-worming of our children will reduce stunting, improve absorption rate of nutrients ingested through proper feeding, and promote general wellbeing of our children,’’ Akabuike said.