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Health News of Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Source: Comfort Asiamah Darkwah

Vodafone Partners with Sickle Cell Foundation of Ghana to Increase Public Awareness

Ghana’s most respected Telecoms Company, Vodafone Ghana has partnered the Sickle Cell Foundation of Ghana to raise public awareness of the Sickle Cell disease in Ghana. Vodafone Ghana hopes to empower Sickle Cell patients with correct information on how to manage this genetic condition and also direct them to the various treatment centres.

The telecommunications giant, who has demonstrated its passion for the health of Ghanaians with ground-breaking health initiatives like Healthline, aims to further improve the quality of life of Ghanaians by partnering and supporting the foundation achieve its mandate of creating a situation where everyone with sickle cell disease or its related conditions in Ghana is properly diagnosed and offered education, counseling, and modern medical and psychosocial services.

Vodafone Ghana decided to help raise awareness on sickle cell, to empower those impacted by the condition to deepen their understanding by giving them access to experts on the disease.  
Peter Mensah, President, Sickle Cell Association of Ghana and Board member of the Sickle Cell Foundation of Ghana goes on to say “We are very grateful for the support given to us by Vodafone Ghana.  This platform will enable us meet our basic objective of creating the needed awareness about the Sickle Cell Disease and help reduce the many myths and misconceptions associated with the disease.  We urge all other organisations and corporate bodies to join us in our 2013 ‘Let Them Know’ awareness project in whatever way possible. 

Carmen Bruce Annan - Head of Corporate Communications at Vodafone Ghana noted that ‘Empowerment runs to the core of who we are as a brand.  We have always believed in giving Ghanaians more, so they can achieve more.  Sickle Cell is arguably the most serious disease in Ghana and we believe that arming people with the correct information will help with both the management and misconceptions of this condition’.

Vodafone sponsored both the Sickle Cell Association and Sickle Cell Foundation with radio interviews to raise awareness on Citi fm, Joy fm. Peace fm and OK fm.  Experts on Sickle Cell were also available to share knowledge, expert advice and answer questions from the public.

Available statistics indicate that over 25% of Ghanaians have the sickle cell gene and approximately 2% of all babies born annually in Ghana have the disease. Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a chronic inherited disease of the blood that is passed onto children on equal basis by both mother and father.  It is characterised by anemia, serious infections, early stroke, and gnawing bone pain and is often perceived as a form of rheumatism.  Sickle cell pain is often referred to as “crisis”. For many people, especially young children, SCD may lead to early death if proper diagnosis and treatment are not available.

For further information on Sickle Cell, please visit www.sicklecellghana.org

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