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Sokoto, Kano, others benefit from diarrhoea prevention project

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By Dayo Ojerinde

About 2,594 health workers and 72,688 caregivers have benefited from the first phase of the Scaling Up of Zinc and Lo-ORS for the Treatment of Childhood Diarrhoea in Northern Nigeria Project.

According to a statement, Nutrition International and Wellbeing Foundation Africa, announced the successful close-out of the first phase of the project.

The project was funded by the government of Canada and was implemented in Sokoto and Kano States.

Dr Titilola Abolade, the project’s programme director, said, “This phase of the project which commenced in August 2021 has recorded key successes in the management and treatment of diarrhoea in Kano and Sokoto States, with the state teams training 2,594 health care workers in both states, working directly with these health care workers in 40 health care facilities in each state, and have reached over 72,688 caregivers within both states.

“At Nutrition International, we believe Scaling up Zinc and Low-Osmolarity Oral Rehydration Solution to improve childhood diarrhoea treatment contributes to enhancing child survival. Diarrhoea is a leading cause of malnutrition and death in children under the age of five. Malnutrition is also known to prolong episodes of diarrhoea and increased mortality. Diarrhoea is preventable and can be treated with Zinc and Low-Osmolarity Oral Rehydration Solution.

“We are pleased to be partnering with the government of Nigeria and people of Sokoto and Kano states in this initiative with the focus of contributing to improved and prompt health-seeking behaviour. In addition, we aim to improve capacity strengthening for health service providers, and sustaining availability and access to quality Zinc and Lo-ORS commodities in public health facilities in the states.”

The Founder-President of Wellbeing Foundation Africa, Mrs Toyin Saraki, in the statement said,” “The ‘Scaling up Zinc and Lo-ORS to Improve Childhood Diarrhoea treatment in Northern Nigeria’ project has strengthened the Drug Revolving Fund schemes in Kano and Sokoto States, which catalyses modern medicine with better supply chain and financial procurement management.

“This project which was implemented by the Wellbeing Foundation Africa provided supportive supervision for health workers; in-facility and follow-up home visits to caregivers; and increased community stakeholders’ engagement, all of which have created a state-wide behavioural change that has delivered measurable improvements where it is most needed. I commend the impact made by the Nutrition International and Wellbeing Foundation Africa partnership and look forward to working on the next phase of this project.”

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