Staffers of NICO North-Central Zone, Ilorin, Kwara State could not hide their joy, , on Tuesday, 21st February, 2017, at the Conference Hall of the Zonal Office in Ilorin, as they enjoyed free voluntary counselling and tests on Hepatitis and HIV viruses during a Health Talk.

The programme took place when the Centre for Disease and AIDS Control, an agency of the Federal Ministry of Health in Kwara State, paid a visit to the Zonal Office, as part of its awareness creation exercise on the dangers, realities and precautionary measures against Hepatitis, HIV and other viruses bedevilling humans.

While welcoming the guests, the Coordinator, NICO North-Central Zonal Office, Ilorin, Mr. Ohi Ojo, appreciated the agency for listing the Institute among other establishments in the state worthy enough to benefit from the kind gesture.

This, he said, could be as a result of the Institute’s doggedness in fulfilling its mandate and in driving the Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma-led Management’s initiatives through series of cultural programmes not just in Kwara State but also within the North-Central geopolitical zone.

He also enjoined staffers to take advantage of such a unique opportunity as staff productivity and proficiency at work could only be achieved in good health, attesting to the saying that, “A healthy nation is a wealthy nation”.

In his presentation, Dr. Oladimeji Ajao said Hepatitis, which is divided into five (5) types: A,B,C,D & E and medically known as the inflammation of the liver cells, is highly contagious, posing similar symptoms with malaria fever, typhoid fever, tuberculosis and other ailments making it one of the deadly viruses around.

According to him, Hepatitis is acclaimed to be deadlier than HIV virus but people out of ignorance pay less attention to it, which is why many are carriers, unknown to them; hence, the need for carrying out tests to ascertain one’s status.

The medical doctor further advised staff to protect themselves as much as possible as there is no specific treatment for the virus other than liver transplant, which is highly expensive.

This, he said, could be done by maintaining good diet (preferably proteinous) and body hygiene, possession of personal salon tools and kits, limit in the intake of fussy drinks and un-prescribed drugs, avoidance or usage of needles or sharp unsterilized objects, especially those contaminated with blood or other body fluids, and total abstinence from unsafe sex.

In a vote of thanks, the Head of Admin and Human Resources, Mrs. Shalom Abolarin, thanked the Centre for Disease and AIDS Controlm as well as the Federal Ministry of Health, for extending a hand of fellowship to NICO, assuring them of the Institute’s willingness to key into their programmes.

At the end of the Talk, tests on Hepatitis and HIV viruses were carried out on the entire staff and vaccines were also administered on interested staff.

Ahmed Mohammed

NICO North-Central Zone

Ilorin, Kwara State