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Adamawa Launches 2nd Phase Of MNTE Vaccination, Targets 29,000 Women

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No fewer than 29,000 women between the ages of 15 to 49 in Numan local government are targeted as Adamawa State launches its second phase of Maternal Neonatal Tetanus Elimination (MNTE) exercise today.

In a press conference marking the beginning of the exercise on Monday, the health educator, Adamawa State Primary HealthCare Development Agency (ASPHCDA), Lydia Adamu said the rationale for the vaccination is to reduce fatality induced by Maternal Neotal Tetanus (MNT).

She noted that MNT deaths are preventable with the administration of vaccines which are usually administered in doses.

Adamu said the first dose was administered on no fewer than 27,000 women within the reproductive age of 15 – 49 in Numan local government last month calling on them to come forward for the second dose of the vaccine.

She also encouraged those who did not receive the first dose to come forward to ensure their safety and the safety of their babies during child delivery.

Lydia noted that MNT remains a major health challenge in about 12 countries including Nigeria necessitating the need for constant vaccination against the deadly disease.

She noted that the use of non sterile instruments and contaminated materials to cut umbilical cord and delivery in unhygienic environment are some of the major causes of MNT infections.

The health educator added that between 10 to 20 percent of tetanus infections are fatal urging people to embrace vaccination as their only shield against the disease through routine immunization.

She urged every woman within child bearing age to take at least three doses of the vaccine so as to remain safe during child delivery because of the fact that eradicating the disease completely is not possible as tetanus spores are found in the soil throughout the world.

Also speaking, Umar Abubakar Bahuli, State Immunization Officer said Numan was chosen for the exercise because data from Adamawa State indicated that MNT cases always emanate from the local government.

He noted that the first phase of the exercise which targeted 27,000 women within the reproductive age of 15 – 49 was successful as the exercise recorded 101 percent success.

He said such informed the drive to increase the coverage to 29,000 women in the second exercise so that more women can be protected.

Earlier in her welcome address, the program manager, state emergency maternal and child intervention center, Rashida Tahir thanked the media for the role it is playing to disseminate information to the general public.

She noted that the MNTE exercise was launched in Numan about a month ago where women of child bearing ages were immunized against the killer disease. She urged the media to sustain the tempo of the awareness for the good of the society.

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Health

Why Smokers Switches To Snuff

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By Sani Yarima 

Snuff is a form of smokeless tobacco made from finely ground tobacco leaves that is absorbed through the mucous membranes in the user’s mouth or nostrils. 

Snuff can lead to effects such as relaxation, increased alertness, elevated heart rate, and a temporary decrease in appetite. 

There are two types of snuff: dry, which is powdered tobacco sniffed through the nostrils, and moist, which is cut tobacco placed in the mouth.

The use of snuff is common in Nigeria, particularly in the northern part of the country, where many people who do not smoke tobacco or have retired from smoking use snuff instead. 

Users such as Danjuma Muhammed and Sanusi Alhaji in an interview with our Correspondent in Jalingo said it makes them feel strong and healthier without experiencing health issues. 

According to them, they have used snuff for over thirty years without adverse effects.

A snuff dealer, Malam Rabi’u Mai Shake, mentioned that there are different types of snuff available, including a popular variety called “Moringa” and a newer, more potent product called “Danmilla.”

The “Danmilla” variant is growing in popularity due to its effectiveness in treating various conditions such as piles, waist pain, eye problems, heartburn, and menstrual issues for women. 

However, the container for “Danmilla” indicates contraindications for people with asthma, tuberculosis, and pneumonia.

Malam Rabi’u claimed that snuff has no negative effects on human health and is not linked to cigarettes, noting that many smokers are quitting cigarettes and switching to snuff not only in Taraba State but in many northern states.

He said he has been using snuff for over ten years without experiencing any health issues. 

Mai Shake also disclosed the wholesale prices of “Danmilla” (N1000) and “Moringa” (N700) snuff containers and advised smokers to switch to snuff for its purported health benefits.

He revealed that he used to make sales of thirty to fifty thousand (N30,000 to N50,000) per day.

On the other hand, Dr. Isaiah Hunuato, a medical doctor, stated that smokeless tobacco, including snuff, contains cancer-causing chemicals such as tobacco-specific N-nitrosamines, cadmium, polonium, formaldehyde, and polycyclic and aromatic hydrocarbons.

Hunuato who spoke via telephone interview, also pointed out that all tobacco products, including snuff, contain nicotine, which is addictive. 

According to him, prolonged use of snuff can lead to addiction and an increased risk of mouth or throat cancer, gum disease, tooth decay, and other health problems. 

Dr. Isiah Hunuato discouraged the use of snuff and warned about its potential to cause high blood pressure and stroke.

It is important to note that snuff is not a safe alternative to smoking and should be used with caution. 

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Health

UNICEF Supports 94,000 Girls With Dignity Kits In NE

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By Our Reporter

The United Nations Children’s Fund, (UNICEF) said it had distributed a total of 94,000 dignity kits to the vulnerable girls and women in the three most affected states by insurgency in the northeast region.

The global organization revealed that it has trained 330 female students in 93 schools on menstrual hygiene management in Borno, Adamawa, and Yobe states respectively.

UNICEF WASH Manager in the Maiduguri office, Ms. Mamita Bora Thakkar disclosed this at a media parley to commemorate the 2024 Menstrual Hygiene Day in Maiduguri on Thursday. 

She urged governments to address the challenge by prioritizing the provision of facilities in schools to help female students manage their menstruation in a dignified and healthy manner while in school.

“We distributed 78,000 dignity kits last year across BAY states, Today our education sector just donated 16,000 dignity kits to the vulnerable girls and women in Borno state.

“So, good menstrual management therefore requires access to appropriate information, materials, and facilities, without which females suffer from poor menstrual experience, diminished self-confidence, and underachievement in education and well-being.

She cautioned that the lack of basic menstrual health needs for the girl child is affecting her attendance in school and participation in community life.

“the onset of menstruation means a new phase and new vulnerabilities in the lives of adolescents. Yet, many adolescent girls face stigma, harassment, and social exclusion during menstruation.”Mamita warned.

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Health

CSOs Advocate For Untax, Subsidize Sanitary Pads

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The Coalition of Non governmental Organizations (NGOs) and Stakeholders working to support improving menstrual hygiene practices and access in Bauchi State have advocated for the government to untax/subsidize sanitary pads for every woman and girl to access menstrual hygiene materials.

They made the call during advocacy and rally to the State Ministry of Women Affairs on Tuesday to commurate 2024 world menstrual hygiene Day on Tuesday in Bauchi

Mr Kingsley Yallings, Who speaks on behalf of the CSOs, calls on the government to untax/subsidize sanitary pads so that every woman and girl can easily access menstrual hygiene materials.

“We are also calling on the government to support the girl child, retain her self-confidence during and after menstrual periods,” he said

Mr Yallings said the coalition is committed to sensitization of rural and urban communities on the prevention of stigmatization of the girl child particularly during menstrual cycle or when abused.

It also supports and encourages survivors to ensure no girl misses school because of menstrual pain through capacity building and provision of first aid boxes in all schools.

“We also advocate to the ministry of education and Ministry of Health to ensure there is a policy on pad and free distribution for schools as a way of reducing the number of girls who miss school during their menstrual period.

“The Coalition also sensitize schools and community heads on the importance of a menstrual stigma free society,” he said

Yallings explained that Menstruation is a natural and essential part of life, yet it remains a topic considered a tabo in many cultures and societies.

“The silence and stigma surrounding menstruation have led to a lack of access to proper menstrual hygiene facilities, products, and education affecting women and girls.

“Therefore,It’s time to break the silence and advocate for menstrual hygiene and dignity.

He said the Coalition of NGOs, CBOs and Stakeholders working to support improving Menstrual Hygiene practices and access was funded by Women for Women international established by ASHHF, Child is Gold foundation Alwadata lifeline initiative among others.

Responding, Mrs Hajara Gidado Commissioner for Women Affairs, Child development and social welfare, represented by Permanent Secretary Alhaji Saleh Abdulmumini appreciated the coalition for engaging in such an awareness campaign.

“If government and CSOs come together they would make make a significant impact in reducing Menstrual Stigma, increasing access to affordable and sustainable menstrual products and facilities in our communities,”

He said the state government is always committed and supportive to any laudable initiative and program that would improve life’s of the citizens in the state.

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