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Health News of Thursday, 14 July 2011

Source: GNA

Minister wants pharmacy students to associate with national malaria policy

Ho, July 14, GNA-Mr Joseph Yieleh Chireh, Minister of Health, has appealed to students of pharmacy currently on outreach in the Volta Region to tie-in the national anti-malaria campaign while preaching the efficacious use of medicines.

He said reducing the occurrence of malaria among the citizenry could boost the success rates of all other medical campaigns, especially those dealing with maternal and child health. Mr Chireh was launching the 2011 National Drug Safety and Health Awareness Campaign in Ho on Thursday on the theme: 93Reducing Maternal and Child Mortality through Preventive Health Education". The yearly programme is held under the auspices of the Ghana Pharmaceutical and Herbal Medicine Students Association. The Minister said the two-pronged malaria campaign, with donor support, provides affordable effective anti-malarias on the open market for the populace, alongside tackling of the vector. He urged the students to prevail on pharmacy and drug store owners they interact with during the period to remove chloroquine-the now ineffectual former recommended first line drug for treatment-from their shelves.

Mr Chireh asked the students to tell their audiences to desist from self medication, eat healthy foods, watch their alcohol intake and charged students studying herbal medicine to impact their scientific knowledge on the production of herbal medicines. Mr Chireh expressed worry about the increasing incidence of lifestyle diseases in the country. Mr Kwasi Owusu Antwi, President of the Association, said the students would visit eight districts in the region in groups of about 10 with the messages. He called for more resources for education on drug use and healthy living in the country. Dr Timothy Letsa, Volta Regional Director, Ghana Health Service (GHS), asked the students to provide information on health problems they noticed on their rounds. Mr Joseph Amenowode, Volta Regional Minister, in a speech read for him appealed to the students to accept postings to the rural areas after school. Miss Binh K. Tang, a student of the Pacific University-Oregon School of Pharmacy, one of the three visiting pharmacy students on the programme, said she had left her 93comfort zone" in the US to be part of the solution to the dire health educational needs of people in Ghana. 14 July 11

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