Health News of Friday, 13 July 2012

Source: GNA

Safe drug awareness campaign launched in Takoradi

The Ghana Pharmaceutical and Herbal Medicine Students Association (GPHMA) on Friday launched a five-day safe drug awareness campaign in the Western Region.

It is under the theme: “Creating National Wealth through a Healthy Lifestyle and Rational Drug Use”.

Members of the GPHMA from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, University of Ghana and Central University College, would educate the public in all the 17 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies in the region on safe drug use.

Addressing the students at the launch, the Western Regional Chairman of the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana, Mr. Kojo Okyere Apenteng, commended the students for the initiative and pledged the support of the Society.

He said wrongful use of drugs had increased chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, stroke, hepatitis, asthma and obesity in the country.

Mr. Apenteng, therefore appealed to the students to sacrifice their comfort to go to the hinterland to sensitize the people on rational use of drugs.

He said the World Health Organisation (WHO) report revealed that 40% of medicines on the market are fake and counterfeit, and told the students to sensitize the people on the need to purchase medicines at certified pharmacies.

The Western Regional Deputy Director of Pharmaceutical Services, Mr. Joseph Eduku Mozu, asked the students to emphasize more on the causes of obesity during the outreach programme since it was one of the causes of many chronic diseases.

He said studies carried out by research institutions had established that obesity is an issue of public health concern in Ghana, especially in women.

“Once you become obese, you are prone to conditions such as heart failure, hypertension, stroke and coronary heart disease. Other conditions caused by obesity include obstructive sleep, breathlessness, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, diabetes among others”, Mr. Mozu said.

The Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Health Director, Dr. Tedi Avotri, said the outreach programme would enhance public knowledge on formal and informal use of drugs.**