KAZO RESIDENTS ASKED TO PRIORITIZE DISEASE PREVENTION DURING THE NATIONAL HEPATITIS DAY COMMEMORATION
Kazo District – 28th August 2023- Hundreds of residents converged at Kazo Model Primary School Playground for the National Commemoration of World Hepatitis Day. This year, the day was held under the theme; “One Life, One Liver- Protect Both”
According to the Ministry of Health 2020 report, 6% of the population in Uganda is chronically infected with Hepatitis B and according to the Uganda Population-based HIV Impact Assessment (UPHIA) 2016 report, the prevalence of Hepatitis B among men is higher at 5.4% and women at 3.0%.
Speaking as the chief guest during the commemoration, Dr. Diana Atwine, the Ministry of Health Permanent Secretary revealed that Hepatitis B is highly infectious and much more infectious than HIV.
Dr. Atwine urged the residents to get tested and get vaccinated if they are still safe adding that those who test positive, should make sure that their samples are taken for viral load testing. “All children who are born in our facilities are vaccinated against Hepatitis B,” she added.
Delving into other health issues, she encouraged women of reproductive age to embrace birth control (family planning) noting that the ministry’s priority is to reduce congestion in health facilities.
On water, sanitation and hygiene practices, she asked health inspectors to strengthen supervision to ensure all households maintain the basic hygienic practices like having a latrine noting that failure to adhere, they should be liable to a fine of UGX 3 Million Shillings or imprisonment.
Dr. Atwine attributed the drug stock-out in most health facilities to increase in sickness and the pre-existing national drug deficit.
In his remarks, the area Member of Parliament, Hon. Dan Kimosho, appreciated Ministry of Health for improved health infrastructure noting that more than three health centres have been constructed in one financial year.
Kimosho urged the population to focus on preventive health like sleeping under a mosquito net, using condoms and avoiding multiple sexual partners in order to prevent HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections, exercising, and ensuring that there is improved sanitation and hygiene.
The LCV chairman, Rev. Samuel Mugisha Katugunda requested for the upgrade of Kazo HC IV to a District Hospital and increase its staffing.
Designed by World Health Organization(WHO), the World Hepatitis Day is aimed at raising awareness about the viral disease, strengthen efforts in prevention, screening and control of viral hepatitis.
Activities to mark the commemoration of National Hepatitis Day included; screening and testing of several diseases, vaccination and treatment of Hepatitis B among others.