The Federal Government in collaboration with the World Health Organization has launched the National Noma Control Program which is geared towards awareness creation and prevention of Noma disease in Nigeria.
Speaking during the Commemoration of the 2018 National Noma Day and Workshop in Abuja, recently, the Hon. Minister of Health, Prof Isaac Adewole noted that sensitization and training of social actors and health workers on early detection, prevention and appropriate referral of Noma cases would lead to reduction of child mortality in Nigeria.
Prof. Adewole pointed out that mapping of Noma cases in Nigeria was on-going and it would enable us to ascertain the states with high prevalence of Noma as well enable us to assess how Noma victims access treatment.
He further said that ‘’the mapping when concluded will help us to know the states where we can focus our interventions’’.
‘’Noma disease has devastating and life – long effects including premature death’’, he added.
The Minister commended the efforts of all those who perform reconstructive surgeries on patients to help restore their functionality and aesthetics.
‘’These surgeries help restore dignity to those who were struck by Noma’’, he said.
He informed that Nigeria would be hosting the next year’s Inter- country Noma Regional Workshop.
The Minister lauded the staff of FMOH, World Health Organization, the Medecins sans Frontieres (MSF) and others for working assiduously to organise a worthwhile event.
Prof. Adewole tasked the stakeholders to come up with practicable ways/strategy of managing, controlling and preventing Noma disease in the country.
In his welcome remarks, the Director, Department of Hospital Services, Federal Ministry of Health, Dr. Joseph Amedu, said that the 2nd Edition of National Noma Day and Workshop would provide a professional platform for exchanging knowledge (PEER REVIEW) and ideas on prevention of the disease.
In his remarks, the Nigeria Head of Mission MSF- Holland, Phillip Aruna, said there was need for capacity building at the community level to improve on surveillance of the disease.
“Noma is a disease that affects the poor; hence we need collaborative efforts by all stakeholders to reduce the burden. It normally affects children within the age range of 2 to 6 years.”
‘’Noma is a huge health and social challenge in developing countries. It is a rapidly spreading gangrenous stomatitis that occurs mostly in debilitated or malnourished children. Adults may also be affected leaving an unpleasant look’’.
During her vote of thanks, the Head of Dentistry Division, Dr. Bola Alonge, thanked the developmental partners like WHO, MSF and other stakeholders for their roles towards the success of the programme.
Mrs. Boade Akinola
Director, Media and Public Relations