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Regional News Wed, 11 Feb 2004

Elephantiasis drugs are not harmful - Dr Agongo

Busa (U/W), Feb. 11, GNA - Most people in the Upper West Region are refusing to take the elephantiasis drugs being distributed freely because they would have to forgo alcohol for some hours and some reactions they get after taking it.

Apart from that, most people do not give credence to the drug, because they are being distributed and administered by other lay people apart from nurses and other health workers.

Dr. Erasmus Agongo, Regional Director of Health Services, who revealed this during the Wa Municipal Health Service Week celebration at Busa on Tuesday, however, encouraged the people to take the drugs to protect them from elephantiasis, which was becoming an epidemic in the country.

He said the reactions were normal and gave the assurance that the drug was not harmful to human.

Dr Agongo called on communities to form partnership with health organisations to reduce the incidence of avoidable diseases in the communities.

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"Diseases such as guinea worm, cholera and dysentery can easily be prevented with effective collaboration."

The Regional Director said the Ghana Health Service would do everything possible to make health service accessible to every Ghanaian and appealed to communities to assist health personnel in terms of accommodation and other social amenities to encourage them to stay with them.

Mr Godfrey Bayong Tangu, Wa Municipal Chief Executive, said the assembly was providing more health facilities in the communities to realise the dreams of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS). He said clinics have been constructed at Duccie, Dabor Dornye and Nurses Quarters at the cost of 508.9 million cedis while three more rural clinics were being constructed at Danyawkura, Mariayiri and Vieri to make health facilities accessible to the people.

Mr Tangu urged health workers to intensify their educational programmes on the NHIS to encourage more people to patronise the scheme. Eight individuals and health centres were honoured for their contribution in the promotion of health care delivery.

All the men awarded winners received certificates and standing fans while the ladies received certificates and Ghana Health Service cloths.

Source: GNA
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