By OLUBUKOLA AIYEDOGBON
ILORIN-Mrs Olufolake AbdulRazaq, wife of Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara, has enrolled 100 sickle cell patients on the Kwara Health Insurance Scheme.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the enrolment was part of activities to commemorate the 2022 World Sickle Cell Day.
Mrs AbdulRazaq was represented at the event held on Sunday in Ilorin by the state Commissioner for Health, Dr Raji Razaq.
She said that the aim of the insurance policy was to minimise the pains of sickle cell patients and also educate and raise more awareness about the disease.
“My office through the Ajike People Support Centre is renewing the health policies for last year’s beneficiaries and also enrolling an additional 100 sickle cell warriors,” she said.
The Executive Secretary, Kwara Health Insurance Agency, Dr Olubunmi Jetawo, called for support for sickle cell warriors in order to enable them live healthier and purposeful lives.
Jetawo said that the focus of the world sickle cell day was to celebrate people living with sickle cell and to increase public knowledge on the management of the disease.
She said that the most common challenge of sickle cell patients was out of pocket payment for healthcare which created huge financial burden for the poor.
According to her, health insurance seeks to address social health disparity in healthcare services and reduce financial burden while emphasising health education.
The executive scribe said that according to statistics, Nigeria ranked high in the prevalence of sickle cell disease amongst the committee of nations.
“Last year the Ajike People Support Centre supported the premium payment for 100 sickle cell warriors.
“The Kwara health insurance agency supported premiums for three warriors who were under the age of 18.
“This year the wife of the governor has not only paid for the renewal of the policies of these 100 warriors but also financially supported the new enrolment of additional warriors,” she said.
Mrs Titilayo Makinde-Bamidele, a sickle cell warrior and Founder, Pearls Sickle Cell Initiative, said most warriors live in physical and spiritual ignorance, adding that the disease can affect any part the body.
Makinde-Bamidele appreciated the governor’s wife, saying they are grateful that the warriors can now access medical care.
She encouraged all sickle cell warriors to keep hope alive and live healthy.
Mr Shittu Kabiruwho, who spoke on behalf of the beneficiaries, appreciated Mrs AbdulRazaq for the initiative and enjoined well-meaning individuals to emulate the kind gesture.
NAN also reports that the beneficiaries were given certificates of re-enrolment and fresh enrolment. (NAN)