Ashanti Region to set up Steering Committee on Lead poisoning prevention

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Review Meeting
Review Meeting

The Ashanti Regional Health Directorate is to form a Steering Committee to provide direction for the fight against Lead poisoning in the Region.

Dr Michael Rockson Adjei, Deputy Ashanti Regional Director of Health Services in charge of Public Health, said the Committee would be inaugurated next year.

He was speaking at a review meeting of stakeholders involved in the implementation of a sensitisation campaign on Lead poisoning in six selected municipalities in the Region.

The campaign, funded by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), is being implemented in Kumasi Metro, Asokore Mampong, Afigya Kwabre South, Old Tafo, Asokwa and Suame Municipalities.

Dubbed, “UNICEF/GHS Communication for Development (C4D) – Lead Poisoning Prevention,” the campaign seeks to draw public attention to the harmful effects of lead poisoning on the human body.

Dr Adjei said the Steering Committee would be mandated to advocate policies and by-laws against lead poisoning and also engage stakeholders in the Lead industry to limit environmental and occupational exposure.

He said children were most at risk because lead could be passed from the mother to the developing unborn child which could lead to brain damage.

All stakeholders must get involved in the campaign because lead poisoning is a major environmental hazard that a chunk of the citizenry is exposed to, he observed.

“Lead is not a metal that the body needs so once it enters the body it causes a lot of damage, especially in children,” Dr Adjei cautioned.

Madam Charity Nikoi, a Communication Specialist with UNICEF, said it was important to review the progress made so far, share experiences, identify gaps and also strategise on the way forward.

She said lead poisoning was a huge environmental challenge affecting river bodies in the Ashanti Region and charged the participants to step up their efforts in sensitizing the people on the effect of the menace.

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