Meningitis, jaundice lead to deformities in children – Expert
The Director, Physiotherapy Department, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Oyo State, Muibat Akintayo, on Wednesday, identified some of the health conditions that cause damage to the brain of a child from birth as major factors responsible for deformity in children.
She made this known in Ibadan, the state capital, at the UCH physiotherapy departmental get-together for physically challenged children in the state.
It was reported that it is an annual event which was initiated over 50 years ago to make over 400 physically challenged children in the state feel the mood of the festive season.
Akintayo said, “Meningitis, jaundice and careless handling of babies during delivery are some of the common factors that have contributed to several deformities in children.”
The director, therefore, called on governments at all levels to implement policies that uplift the living standard of people with disability in Nigeria.
She said, “We have policies, we have Disability Act that was signed by our immediate past President, Muhammadu Buhari, in January 2019. But what we need now is implementation. If we can implement these policies, it will help a lot, especially by involving them in the National Health Insurance Scheme, because their care is very expensive, and some parents cannot afford it.
“It is imperative for the physically challenged to have easy access to public buildings, so the Federal Government should include them in the health insurance scheme. We are appealing again that the government should, please, enforce the implementation of that Act. The Act is very good but implementation is what we want from the government now.”
In her remarks, the planning committee chairperson, Mrs Oyinlola Kehinde, said the event was to help the children have a sense of belonging during the festive season and to raise awareness of the need for members of the public to care for them.
In his address, the chairman on the occasion, Damola Awosika, promised to mark his birthday with them every year and donate whatever gifts he received during the celebration to the department for onward distribution to them.
One of the people with disabilities, Oluwasegun Akinlosotu, who just celebrated his 48th birthday, said that he had been participating in the yearly programme since he was one year old.
He said, “I have been coming to this end-of-the-year party since I was one year old. My grandmother used to bring me here every year until I became a fully grown-up man, and since then I never missed a year. We know the month, date and time we celebrate the end-of-the-year party in this department, so we don’t wait until UCH call us because it’s a fixed yearly programme.”
Two parents of the beneficiaries, Mrs Awelewa Temitope and Mrs Okome Folorunso, who was elated with the quality of gifts and hospitality given to the children, showered encomium on the department for their yearly gesture.
Different gift items including crutches and toys were presented to the beneficiaries.