The House of Senate has passed the sickle cell control bill. This bill was passed by the Senate after a plenary was held on Tuesday, September 21.
In the latest health news in Nigeria compiled by reporters, Nigeria leads in the ranks of sickle cell anaemia patients in the globe.
The sickle cell control bill committee was led by Senator Yahaya Oloriegbe a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Senator Oloriegbe explained during the plenary that the sickle cell anaemic disease is hereditary. He explained further that sickle cell anaemia was a disorder of Haemoglobin (SS) from either or both parents. This disease affects almost 100 million people in the world.
He described Nigeria as the first sickle cell endemic country in the world. In 2006, the World Health Organisation (WHO) described Nigeria as the capital of sickle cell disease globally.
Senator Oloriegbe advised that sickle cell anaemia be put under control, to reduce fatality. He further warned that the disease could interfere with Nigeria’s aspiration of attaining Goal 3 of 2020. These goals are;
- Good health
- Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
He emphasized that special attention be paid to the prevention and management of the disease.
Senator Oloriegbe said that the bill would establish the legal framework for the prevention, control and management of the disease. The bill will also avert the spread, death and unnecessary medical expenses by the families.
His words: “The bill will strengthen the existing structure, encourage and strengthen support groups and other groups to be able to assess the effectiveness or otherwise of the control strategies in place to eliminate sickle cell disease.”
What is a sickle cell?
Sickle Cell anaemia is a genetic disorder of the haemoglobin (SS) from one or both parents. This disease is transferred to the offspring from parents with this disorder. Children at risk of contracting this disease:
- A baby whose parents have the same genetic type AS or AC.
- A baby whose parent with genotype AS and the other SS or AC and SC.
Symptoms of Sickle Cell
- Anemia – A condition that there aren’t enough red blood cells to carry oxygen to the body.
- Periods of pain that can last a few hours to a few days.
- Blood clots.
- Swelling in hands and feet.
- Joint pain that resembles arthritis.
- Chronic neuropathic pain (nerve pain).
- Life-threatening infections.
- Anemia (decrease in red blood cells).