Leadership Initiative trains primary healthcare workers in Lagos

Primary Health Care

Leadership Initiative For Youths Empowerment, a Non Governmental Organization (NGO), has trained health workers at Primary Healthcare Centres in Isolo and Itire areas of Lagos, on improving community access to sexual transmitted infections (STI) and treatments for vulnerable members of the community.

Programme Officer for Leadership Initiative, Joseph Afam, said the training was to sensitise health workers on how to deal with STI, patients when it comes to access to healthcare services. Afam noted that secondary school leavers are vulnerable to become or patronise sex hawkers because of their lifestyles and they face stigmatization especially, in the community and for healthcare services. Afam said: “Because of the stigmatization these set of people do not come to hospital to access treatments for Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection and acquired immune deficiency syndrome Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Science (AIDS) and other sexual transmitted diseases.

So, we use this opportunity to create awareness for the need for health workers to imbibe certain skills, such as polite communications, empathy, respect and confidentiality to the patients. When the health workers apply these skills the patients would feel at home so, we are encourage sexual hawkers to come forward to access medical treatments. So, we advice health workers to treat them properly attack the diseases and not the patients. We discovered that many health workers do not respect patients but this training would go a long way in improving their attitudes towards patients at all levels.”

Senior Health Officer, Famuyiwa Elizabeth Omawumi, who is also one of the beneficiaries said she has learnt the skills especially respect to patients and confidentiality because these are keys to successful treatment. Omawunmi explained:“When patients should be respected and their confidential maintained at all times you see that the patient would recover quickly. I have learnt to keep secrets of my patients for successful treatments. Another thing is empathy; you have to put your self in the position of your patients and feel sorry for him..

“We are been taught to be flexible with our patients, we have to be patience enough in dealing with our patients to enable them give us history and details of their sickness and also feel at home. When you handle patients with polite communicate it goes a long way in boosting the treatment.”

“Our attitudes have changed after this training because all the things we have leant we are going to put them to practice for benefits of our patients.”

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