CFID urges patients to seek information about their health condition
Centre for Initiative and Development (CFID), has stressed the need for patients to monitor and seek knowledgeable information about their health conditions.
Good knowledge about one’s health the group said will help patients to effectively observe, control and live healthy life since knowledge is power.
Executive Director of the CFID, Danjuma Adda, who spoke during the commemoration of the World Patients Solidarity Day, which was observed in Taraba state, stated that patients irrespective of their ailments must be empowered with relevant information relating to their health status.
Empowerment in this context he explained “is a state where patients develop an ability to make autonomous and informed decisions.” Such decision, he believes would promote “behaviours which involves adopting a proactive mindset whereby patients can be in control of their health and healthcare decisions.”
Citing the Alma-Ata declaration of 1978, which said, “The people have the right and duty to participate individually and collectively in the planning and implementation of their health care,” he added that patient as made known to him “is the focus of all healthcare delivery.”
Stressing that adequate knowledge of what their rights are will enable them to “effectively advocate for their fulfilment,” he expressed that patients and patient advocates, can “empower themselves by developing a stronger understanding of what their rights and responsibilities are as patients.”
Encouraging patients to always come together and advocate for their rights, Adda noted “by being aware of their responsibilities, patients will be able to engage in constructive dialogue with other stakeholders and make a contribution to improve healthcare and patient-centricity. Patients must have self-confidence in their unique skills, such as their knowledge of what it is like to live with a condition.”
Patients as suggested by Adda must also strengthen their ability to recognise opportunities of engagement, such as the possibility to take part in research processes or consultations aimed at eliciting patients’ views.
He identified low awareness on patient-centered approach to healthcare among policy makers, healthcare providers and patient community as major bane halting patients from assessing information that would empower them.
Stating that “Africa, has just three per cent of the global doctors, but carries 25 per cent of global disease conditions,” he added that over burdened healthcare systems and poor access to healthcare services are among the numerous challenges confronting patients from knowing their rights.
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