The Taraba state Ministry of Health in collaboration with Mitosath, Commonwealth, World Health Organization’s (WHO) and Sight Savers has embarked on a free medical care exercise to the good people of the state.

Some health challenges such as Trachoma, Glaucoma, Catarrhal, Cesarean Section (CS), Diarrhea and Dysentery will be attended to.

The exercise which started from Gashaka and Bali LGAs with over 500 beneficiaries will last for a period of three years.

The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health, Dr. Musa Obadiah said that the program has been on for two weeks with the training of health workers followed by survey.

Dr. Musa said that the main problem that is being tackled is a disease called Trachoma (an infectious disease that affects the eye especially in childhood) that if not we’ll treated will develop to what is called Trichiasis (An ingrown eyelash) which may result to blindness.

“The infection has an insidious onset that the early stage is treated with antibiotics and at a later stage, it can only be corrected by surgery.”

“Presently, the surgery is going on for those with Trichiasis and those that are having the active infection, zithromax is given to them to remove the infection so that later in life they won’t have the complications that will lead to blindness.”

The Permanent Secretary said that most of the people doing the work are staff from the ministry of health with little support from partners like Mitosath, World Bank, Sight saver international etc.

“The training of health workers was done in stages. We have supervisors who are trained from the state level who in turn train the local government staff.”

“The local government will identify the problem while the external partners will do the surgery.”

According to Dr. Musa, the program is something that is done periodically but that the main issue is the containment of the infection.

He said that the sustainability of the program by the state government is sure because the health workers are from the state, the facilities being used is owned by the state government, the resources are derived from the state.

“The partners are augmenting while the state is providing.”

Similarly, maternal and child birth services, health talk in environmental sanitation, good portable water, prevention of kwashiorkor/marasmus among children, deworming of children, good nutritional intake will also be rendered to the people in every community the team

visits.