Guild of Medical Directors holds conference on hepatitis
The Guild of Medical Directors (GMD) has held a conference (and its 24th Annual General Meeting) in Abuja to deliberate on measures to check the upsurge of hepatitis in Nigeria.
The conference with the theme: “Let’s Make Nigeria Hepatitis Free,” listed underscoring the invidious nature of the disease, where the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, represented by Director of Health Services, Dr. Joe Amedu, stated that whereas other infectious diseases have acute symptoms that can easily call for attention, hepatitis was a silent ailment that causes chronic liver disease, liver cancer and ultimately death.
While commending the GMD for supporting ministry’s efforts in its drive towards a healthy nation, he said: “The conference is appropriate as it will create awareness on viral hepatitis. This will reduce the dangers associated with lack of knowledge on Hepatitis and prevent it from reaching epidemic levels like Meningitis and Ebola viruses.”
The keynote speaker at the conference, Dr. Chukwuma Anyaike, disclosed that about 1.4 million persons die annually from viral Hepatitis; 400 million persons are living with Viral Hepatitis the world over with 100 million in sub-Saharan Africa; Nigeria has 20 million people living with Hepatitis; Kano State has the highest rate of infection in Nigeria followed by Gombe and Kwara States respectively!
He added: “The prevalence rate is highest within the most productive years of the population, 21-40 age range while highest transmission rate is from mother to child.”