Expert gives panacea to sickle cell disease prevalence
Delivering a public lecture to mark this year’s World Sickle Cell Day in Umuahia Abia state yesterday, Mrs Ukoha listed some of the causes as the prevalence of the genetic disorder, ignorance, falsification of genotype results due to what she called ‘ blind love’, faulty analysis of genotype tests, concealed genotypes , among others.
She consequently called for the intensification of awareness campaigns to educate intending couples against making wrong choices in marriage expressing worry that Nigeria is currently the highest record of sickle cell anemia in the world.
According to her, Nigeria records over 150,000 new births with sickle cell disease per annum and lamented the absence of neonatal screening machine and other high- tech machines for the treatment of the disease in the state.
Adding that the only neo- natal screening machine in the entire South East is in Ebonyi State, she gave the range of the cost of the machine at between N5 million and N6 million hence she urged for urgent government intervention.
The state governor’s wife Deaconess Nkechi Ikpeazu whose office facilitated the lecture, said the road walk held in Umuahia before the lecture , was to create awareness on the dangers of marrying the wrong partner.
Eradication of sickle cell anemia she said, was the focus of her pet project called Vicar Hope Foundation on whose platform a world- class Sickle Cell Centre is being built in Umuahia, the state capital.