BENIN – The Edo State Commissioner of Health, Dr. David Osifo said Edo State government was ready to partner non-governmental organizations in the treatment and control of epilepsy in the State.
Dr. Osifo said this while playing host to a Mental Health Advocate from Kenya under the auspices of the Junior Chamber International (JCI). The Commissioner who was represented by the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Dr. Asogun Izielen, said the Ministry would partner with the JCI in eradicating epilepsy in Edo State.
“Epilepsy can be treated and there are drugs handed out free by the State government. I think what JCI should do is to come out with a position paper on the way they intend to assist the government in eradication epilepsy. We will be very happy to partner with you”, he said.
Speaking earlier, the Mental Health Advocate- Sitawa Wafula said she was in the State to share her mission, vision and information on mental health especially epilepsy with the State government. She said she aspires to build a resource center where people that have mental health issues can gain access to information online and all the help they need to manage their conditions.
“Epilepsy should be seen as a health issue and not spiritual as most Africans sees it. The government should come up with more facilities and means to assist those with HIV/AIDS, in a view to reducing the cost of treatment”, she said.
The mental health advocate was earlier received by the Chief Medical Director of the State Central Hospital, Dr. Philip Ugbodaga in his office. Dr. Ugbodaga said epileptic cases are being handled by physician employed by the State and that there are advances in its treatment. He said that there was a social welfare department that locate patient’s families for integration.
The CMD however decried the level of personnel deficiency in the treatment of epilepsy in the hospital and called for collaboration in that regard.
The President of JCI, Benin Metropolitan, JCIN (Amb.) Iyamu Osaro Culture thanked the CMD for receiving them and promised to synergise with the hospital in ensuring that the issue of epilepsy in the State is properly tackled.