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20.04.2005 Regional News

MOH institutes award for Guinea worm informants

By GNA

Breman Kokoso (C/R), April 20, GNA - The Ministry of Health has instituted an award package for people in guinea worm endemic areas who report infected cases to the Disease Control Unit of the Ghana Health Service for treatment.

The award, which would be in cash and kind, would also be given to people with the disease who reported for treatment free of charge. Mr Patrick Kyeremeh, Disease Control Officer in charge of Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa District of the Central Region, said these were part of efforts by the Ministry to rid the country of the disease.

He was speaking when he led health personnel to de-worm 600 children from the Breman Kokoso Catholic and Methodist Nursery and Junior Secondary Schools organised by the Assemblywomen for Breman Kokoso, Ms Pyhilis Nyakoh.

The Philomina Gaisie Foundation and the Netherlands Foundation, both Non Governmental Organisations sponsored the Programme estimated at 27 million cedis.

Mr Kyetremeh who did not give details of the package said it was to encourage infected people to feel free to report for treatment. He asked the children to keep personal hygiene and cautioned them to wear sandals both at home and school.

The District Disease Control Officer told them that when worms entered stomachs especially that of children, it lowered their intelligence.

He advised people in the guinea worm endemic areas to boil and sieve water drawn from rivers and streams before use to avoid infection. Ms Nyakoh said the Foundations spent 27 million cedis in the first phase of the exercise last year and praised the Philomina Gaisie Foundation for assisting children at Kokoso.

She expressed the hope that the programme would be a permanent feature and cautioned children in the area to desist from swimming in rivers and streams to avoid contracting water borne diseases.

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