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Airtel backs DRASA on healthcare interventions

Airtel Managing Director, Segun Ogunsanya
Airtel Managing Director, Segun Ogunsanya

Telecoms services provider, Airtel Nigeria, has thrown its weight behind the Dr. Ameyo Stella Adadevoh (DRASA) Health Trust to commemorate Nigeria’s first anniversary after the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the country Ebola-free last year October 20th.

To mark the anniversary, DRASA Health Trust, a non-profit organisation formed in memory of the late doctor who risked her life to contain the first case of Ebola in Nigeria, has unveiled robust healthcare initiatives aimed at preventing future outbreak of infectious diseases in Nigeria.

At the event which took place at the Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos, Wednesday.

DRASA Health Trust said the health programmes include the Outbreak Preparedness/Response, Simulation Training and #ItStartsWithMe Campaign.

Speaking on the telco’s support to the Trust, Director, Corporate Communications & CSR, Airtel Nigeria, Mr. Emeka Oparah, noted that Airtel Nigeria is committed to offering relief to Nigerians through its various CSR programmes, saying Airtel and DRASA are passionate about initiatives that will transform lives and empower more Nigerians.

According to Mr. Oparah, Airtel Nigeria, as a responsive organisation, gave its support to the government’s team last year by donating items towards the fight against the Ebola Virus.

“It is in the DNA of Airtel Nigeria to continuously strive to proffer solutions to alleviate difficulty or challenges and extend a helping hand to underprivileged people through its charity programmes like the Airtel Touching Lives programme, a revolutionary CSR initiative that has impacted on the lives of individuals, people and communities across Nigeria,” he said.

Commenting on the DRASA initiatives, Trustee member, Dr. Ama Adadevoh, noted that under the Outbreak Preparedness/Response, the Trust will partner with relevant bodies to train 1000 experts across the country on the spectrum of outbreak response for Ebola and other infectious diseases, develop  a  university  curriculum  based  on  the  EVD  Guide  and develop  a  digital  platform  of  the  EVD  Guide  for  further  dissemination.

“While under the Simulation Training, DRASA will champion  medical  simulation  for  students  and  health  professionals  to  fill  a  critical  gap  and build capacity  in  medical  ethics  and  infectious  diseases.

Speaking further, she noted that both ethics and infectious diseases control are areas where there is limited expertise in Nigeria, however, Dr.  Adadevoh exemplified the essence of an ethical medical practitioner when she contained an  infected  patient  at  personal  danger, making her truly  faithful  to  her  Hippocratic  Oath.”

The third part of the programme is the #ItStartsWithMe Campaign held last week Thursday, October 15th to mark the Global Handwashing Day.

At the event Vice President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osibanjo was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Health, Mr. Linus Awute, while Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode was represented by Special Adviser to the Governor on Primary Healthcare, Dr. Femi Onanuga. Airtel Nigeria’s team at the event included Head, Public Relations, Adefemi Adeniran; Director, Enterprise, Tawa Bolarin and CSR Manager, Chinda Manjor.

It would be recalled that last year, Nigerian government swiftly responded to the index case which was recorded in July in Lagos, but it was successfully curbed and the WHO declared Nigeria Ebola-free on October 20th.

Late Dr. Adadevoh courageously identified and contained the first case of Ebola in Nigeria. Her heroic efforts prevented an outbreak in Nigeria. DRASA was created in her honour to reflect her passion and continue her legacy of providing high-quality healthcare in Nigeria.

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