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Doctors harp on palliative care for terminally ill patients

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The World Medical Association (WMA), African region has called for strengthening of palliative care for patients with terminally ill ailments across Africa.

The association made the call in a communiqué issued at the end of its conference hosted by the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) on Saturday in Abuja.

Palliative care entails alleviating the suffering of terminally ill patients, physically, psychologically, socially, spiritually and emotionally.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme of the conference; “An Excursion into the End of Life Spectrum: Defining the boundaries between palliative care, euthanasia and physician-assisted-suicide.’’

Prof. Mike Ogirima, who read the communiqué, identified mechanisms toward strengthening palliative care to include, strengthening national policies for such care, increased funding, as well as, creating national and regional palliative care centres.

According to him, adopting such mechanisms will go a long way in ensuring the effectiveness of palliative care for patient with terminal diseases.

Ogirima said such efforts would reduce out of pocket expenditure of the patients and their relatives.

He said there were yet to be policies on “End-of-life issues’’ in most African countries, except in Botswana, Kenya, Nigeria and Zambia where some initiatives have been taken on palliative care.

“We resolved that the care given to terminally ill patients should be encouraged and strengthened in all African countries with guidelines.

“Countries like Botswana and Zimbabwe are already implementing the guidelines, but we are yet to implement it in Nigeria,’’ he said.

The president, however, said African region rejected physicians assisted suicide and Euthanasia, describing them as contrary to the physician’s oath.

The oath stipulates “I will not use my medical knowledge to violate human rights and civil liberties even under threat’’, he said.

Euthanasia is ending the life of another person through various actions which included injecting the person, giving an overdose and withdrawal of food.

Ogrima also explained that physician assisted suicide is a practice where doctor provide patients with the knowledge to kill themselves which could be in form of drugs among others.

Countries that had legalised such practice include Switzerland and Netherland.

Ogirima, however, frowned at such practices, adding “WMA ethics of physicians does not permit us to take life’’.

“We Africans reject Euthanasia and physician-assisted-suicide. We cannot assist patients, who may wish to end their lives, because the law of the country and WMA ethics of physicians do not permit us to take life.’’

Similar, Otmar Kloiber, the Secretary- General of (WMA) urged physicians worldwide to chart a course toward the safety and security of terminally ill patients, rather than prolonging their sufferings.

He identified end of life as necessary care to comfort patients, take away pains and anxiety, urging all countries to channel adequate resources in this direction.

The secretary-general also identified inadequate resources for health as a major impediment to palliative care on the continent.

He, however, called for universal health coverage that guarantees health insurance.

According to him, such measure will provide palliative care coverage and a proper quality healthcare.

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Bitter leaf boosts fertility, fights prostate

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Drugs: Essential to human health

Drugs: Essential to human health

Dr Grace Johnson, a specialist, has said bitter leaf works so well for fertility, and fights prostate cancer because its boost the functions of the reproductive system, balance hormones and help the ovary release healthy eggs.

Johnson, who is Food Nutritionist, told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Monday, that the effect of bitter leaf ranges from specifically toning the reproductive organs and boosting overall health.

According to her, the problem with a lot of infertile patients is that they do not connect infertility with “fertile nutrition”.

“Good nutrition is considered to be the foundation of a healthy body. That is why a healthy ovary will only be found in a healthy body.

“When the ovary is healthy, it releases a healthy egg (ovum) which once fertilized, results in a healthy pregnancy and if all goes well, you will have a healthy child.

“Bitter leaf has a bitter taste and it is true that most people cannot withstand it but remember that the best of medicines comes with a bitter taste and bitter leaf is ranked high among them,’’ she said .

NAN reports that bitter leaf plant with leafy green vegetable and used in the form of vegetable eaten to promote and enhance the digestive tract to do job.

Johnson said “bitter leaf fight prostate cancer which is common among men who are over 40 years old and one of its known symptoms is difficult and painful urination.

“Bitter leaf is very good for this ailment. It increases the flow of urine and reduces the pain as well as regulates the spread of the cell.

“To fight prostate cancer with bitter leaf, just squeeze the fresh leaves in water and take a glassful four times daily while you constantly go for a checkup.

She added that bitter leaf also fight Insomnia, `insomnia is a condition that promotes habitual sleeplessness’.

Nutritionist, however, said that bitter leaf extract has been doing wonders for those suffering from sleeplessness by taking two glasses of bitter leaf solution every night and they would experience a calmness and sleep.

She said that almost everybody knows bitter leaf is a well-known remedy for stomachaches treating malaria, typhoid, diabetes, diarrhea, tuberculosis, gallstones, kidney disease, prevention of cancer and lowering of hypertension among others.

“It is important that bitter leaves should always be taken fresh in other to enjoy its miraculous health benefits,’’ Johnson said.

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Without regular sex women risk mental disorder – Psychiatrist

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Mental disorder in women who do not have regular sex

Mental disorder in women who do not have regular sex

A psychiatrist, Dr Maymunah Kadiri on Saturday advised married women to have regular sex with their spouses in order to prevent depression and gain happiness.

Depression is a common mental disorder that causes people to experience depressed mood, loss of interest or pleasure, feelings of guilt or low self-worth, disturbed sleep or appetite, low energy, and poor concentration.

Kadiri, the Medical Director of Pinnacle Medical Services gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

Pinnacle is a health and wellness centre for psychological, behavioral, and mental health related issues.

According to her, sex is not just to nourish a woman’s body, but it is also beneficial to her mental health.

“As women, there is need for us to make our spouses our best friends if we want to be mentally healthy.

“Studies have shown that women who have more active sex and in long term relationships were less likely to be depressed than women who went without sex.

“So, more sex is important and essential. It is a remedy to curing women from having persistent headache.

“Low sexual drive, which leads to depression, should be looked into. A woman can be depressed when that sexual drive that she used to have is no more there.

“Frequent active sex can play good roles toward women’s sense of well being and quality of life,’’ Kadiri said.

She explained that sex was not just for procreation and to have children, adding that it could create bonding, good companionship and sound sleep.

Kadiri, popularly called ‘celebrity shrink’, urged women dealing with depression to frequently indulge in sex, while boosting their self-esteem.

She also advised women who are over-weight to also involve in active sex, saying doing so will boost endorphins which are happy hormones.

“The happy hormones will make them lose some calories as well as sleep better.

”Orgasms trigger the release of endorphins which are happy hormones secreted by the brain that act as effective painkillers,’’ she said.

She added that sex was not only beneficial to the men, but especially to women because it was capable of freeing them from stress.

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NGO Set to Launch a Cancer Trust Fund for Indegent Cancer Patients Treatment.

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NGO Set to Launch a Cancer Trust Fund for Indegent Cancer Patients Treatment.

NGO Set to Launch a Cancer Trust Fund for Indegent Cancer Patients Treatment.

By Faith Ekeh Abuja

A non-governmental
cancer organisation, Project Pink Blue (PPB) is set to launch a cancer trust fund to help make funds readily available for treatments of indigent cancer patients already signed up on their trust and website.

Speaking to newsmen during a ‘show love’ fundraising comedy and music show recently in Abuja, the founder, PPB, Runcie Chidebe, stated that the organisation hopes to achieve the target of raising the sum of 100 million naira that will be kept in a trust to cater for cancer patients already signed up on their trust and website with their consent.

According to him, “We are looking at how we can bring individuals and organisations together to collaborate and raise funds that will enable us attend to cancer patients on time and not have to wait for sometimes six months to source enough funds on the social media for their treatment”.

“The management of the funds that are are going to be raised here today is going to be very public and transparent so the sponsors can trust us to touch lives of these patients with these funds”, he added.

Also at the event, one of the fundraising partnering organisations and the coordinator of the African Centre for Media and Information Literacy, Chido Onumah, assured the general public on the judicious use of their funds for cancer patients treatment. In his words, ” We appreciate all those partnering in these fundraising. We want you to be rest assured that whatever penny that is raised here today will be transparently and judiciously managed in the treatment of these cancer patients”.

Also speaking at the event, the First Lady of Ondo State and the founder of the Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria, Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu, stated education and awareness is at the foundation of the fight against cancer.

She further stated that you can beat cancer if you are adequately informed because she is also a survivor of breast cancer. In her words, “The first thing is to be aware and seek medical help on time. I am standing here to specifically say that you can beat cancer and specifically because I am a survivor of breast cancer”.

She urged everyone to join their voices in these fight against cancer. According to her, “We have to be our brothers and sisters keeper because you would never know the family cancer will knock at its door”.

Also speaking at the event, a veteran journalist and former broadcaster with the Nigerian Television Authority, Moji Makanjuola stressed that cancer is an epidemic that can happen to anybody and so should be given such attention.

She intimated that she is proud to have identified with PPB right from the beginning and after she lost her best friend and also an aunt to cancer.

“I cannot do any other thing for humanity than to be part of these course because these is all about humanity”, she added.

The fundraising featured and had in attendance, Alex Unusual of BBNaija as the host, Chidinma Ekile for music, Osama, Koboko master, Amb.Wahala, Ghana Must Go, Mc Tagwaye, Mc3310, McBob, Mc Ukodo for comedy, Annie Idibia as Nollywood actress, Adogah Moses and Friends for dance, CEOs like Payport and PlayNetwork Africa and the hosts of other celebrities.

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