Some visually impaired students at the Wa Methodist School for the Blind have benefited from free health screening to mark the celebration of the International Day of Persons with Disability (IDPwDs).
The Community Aid for Rural Development (CARD) Ghana, in partnership with Eco Hospital and Healing Hearts, organised the health screening, which saw the students, predominately females, screened for Hepatitis B, Malaria, Syphilis, cervix status, and profiling of their eye problems.
Mr Latif Mumuni, the Executive Director of Eco Hospital, told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an interview in Wa during the exercise that students who tested negative for Hepatitis B would be vaccinated while those who tested positive for it or malaria would be offered the necessary treatment and counseling.
He said the students would also be counseled after profiling their eye problems to provide them with the needed psychological support.
Mr Mumuni said it was important for visually impaired children to know their health status to enable them to manage their health and lives appropriately.
Talking about the “16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence”, he said the students had to be healthy before they could engage in any advocacy for their rights.
“If you are not healthy you will not even remember your vulnerability to advocate for it”, the Executive Director observed.
He said his facility had been providing charitable medical services to the less privileged in society but said the partnership with other organisations had helped them to widen their charity net to cover the PwDs.
Miss Leenat Abdul Rahaman, the Executive Director of CARD Ghana, said the beneficiaries were part of the She Leads network, called the “Industrious Ladies” based in the school who aspire to attain higher grounds in education despite their disability statuses.
She explained that as part of the activities to mark the IDPwDs, the visually impaired school children would also launch a campaign to engage stakeholders on issues that affect their lives.
She said all those activities were also geared towards building their confidence levels and enhancing their leadership skills for their future endeavours.
The students expressed appreciation to the organisations for the intervention and said knowing their health status would help them a lot.
“Some of us, this is our first time going through Hepatitis B screening and I am happy for that because it will help us to know our health status”, Miss Judith Leebon, the Team Lead of the students, said.
Madam Christiana Asaah, the Senior House Mistress of the school, thanked the organisations for choosing the school for the screening saying, “We are not the only disability school, but they choose us, and we are grateful for that.”
She appealed to the Ghana Health Service to organize regular health screening for the students as it was important for their lives.
Madam Asaah also pleaded with the authorities to help make the school clinic, which was handed over to them about a year ago, operational by posting health staff to help make access to healthcare services by the students easier.