By Elijah Ugani: Health Correspondent
A Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) inspired foundation has carried out a medical outreach in Ukpong Attia community of Akpabuyo local government area of southern Cross River State.
YALI is a United States government program aimed at building leaders in the African region and the founder of the foundation, Ms. Perpetua Ugbang said that it will be a continuous activity even at the expiration of her YALI program.
“I decided to stage this outreach because I have the passion for the girl child education and health and also as part of the requirements for the completion of the programme I’m undertaking with Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), I hope to sustain this initiative, those tested positive have been identified and linkage created, I will come back here in Monday to create contact with the health officers at the PHC , so that we will be able to get the drugs to them without causing them to pay their way to the town to get the drugs,” said Ms. Ugbang.
She partnered the United States Agency for International Development Health Finance and Governance (USAID HFG) team, the Mediatrix Development Foundation (MDF), the Heartland Alliance and the Nigeria Youth Network on HIV/AIDs (NYNETHA) and the Cross River State Primary Health Care Development agency for the program.
And, the Chief Operating Officer of MDF, Mr. Jeffrey Adamade noted that: “This is part of our deliverable, in the health component of our thematic, it always our intention to partner initiatives like this to reduce the burdens of communicable diseases, from records, Cross River State is still at the high rate.”
Also, Dr. Janet Ekpenyong of HFG who averred that they are committed to partner with individuals and group of individuals to take health care services to the vulnerable especially in the rural areas, also pledged to continuously support the foundation.
On the clinicals, she said that: “I am happy because we have identified some positive cases of HIV who has never been tested in life and we will ensure that they are placed on drugs, I also took time to talk to them about the health insurance scheme, which is in other words referred to Ayadecare.”
The state coordinator of NYNETHA, Mr. Obase Okanke noted that he they identified with the outreach since the founder is a young person.
“We have to support her program and vision as part of our encouragement and support as well as working for my state and imparting on the vulnerable,” said Mr. Okanke.
One of the beneficiaries, Mrs. Grace Bassey Ekpenyong expressed gratitude to the organizers and prayed God grants them the wherewithal to return in the future.
Services rendered at the outreach included Hiv/Aids testing and counseling, menstrual health and hygiene, malaria testing and treatment as well as distribution of long lasting insecticide treated nets.
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