Gifts program is golden opportunity to eradicate anemia from Ghana – GHS

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Dr. Chrystantus Kubio
Dr. Chrystantus Kubio

The Ghana Health Service in the Savannah Region is calling on the general public to embrace the Girls’ Iron Folic Tablets Supplementation (Gifts) program as an important step to eradicating anemia among adolescent girls in Ghana.

At a media/stakeholder engagement on Girls’ Iron Folic Tablets Supplementation (GIFTS) program held at Damongo, the Savannah Regional capital,the Regional Nutrition Officer, Brian Kamara noted that anemia remains a problem of public health significance in Ghana with a prevalence rate of 26% among young adults aged 15-19 years in 2017.

He said the GIFTS program was being implemented as an inter-sectorial intervention between the Ghana Health Service and the Ghana Education Service with their partners to promote health and nutrition education and enhance behavior change to control and prevent anemia.

According to him,due to the inadequate cross-sectorial communication and poor institutional commitment, there were a lot of misconceptions around the GIFTs program with some misconceiving the IFA Supplements as family planning pills, adding that,” we need the strong partnership and support of the media to correct some of these misconceptions”.

The Savannah Regional Director of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Chrystantus Kubio,used the opportunity to dispel rumors of meningitis outbreak in the region, whilst calling for a collaborative effort to address issues of anemia among adolescent girls.

He said there was the need to incorporate health and nutrition education among adolescent girls both in school and out of school to promote healthy behaviors and eradicate misconceptions surrounding the Iron Folic Acid Supplementation.

On CoVid-19,he said there were gaps in the vaccination as we enter the fourth wave of the pandemic with a lot of people resisting the jab.

According to him,the service has received enough stock of the Covid-19 vaccines for the region.

He called on the media to help address the public misconceptions and hesitancy to the Covid-19 jab in order to reduce the risk of spread of the virus.

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