World Kidney Day: Obaseki mulls compulsory medical test for Edo workers

Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, has hinted that his administration is working on a plan that will encourage workers in the state to undergo medical test, on an annual basis, to ascertain their health status.

Obaseki who said this on the occasion of the commemoration of World Kidney Day, marked on March 14, each year, noted that early detection of diseases saves costs and lives.

He explained that “in the organised private sector, annual medical test is a standard practice and it provides current information on workers’ health condition and status.”

He added: “The only way to know if there are potential problems with your health is through a medical test. If there is a condition that poses a threat, you can spot it through tests and deal with it immediately. This way, you save yourself the agony, costs and other troubles that are associated with late detection of diseases.”

Obaseki said his administration’s ongoing reforms in the health sector, particularly the establishment of Primary Health Care Centres (PHCs) across the state and the health insurance scheme, would eliminate barriers and encumbrances to quality health care services in the state.

“Our goal is to take quality health care services to the doorsteps of our people irrespective of their location, so that sufferers of kidney disease and other ailments can easily access these centres for care,” he added.

The governor urged Nigerians in all fields of human endeavours to imbibe the culture of undergoing comprehensive health checks, at least once in a year.

The World Kidney Day (WKD) is a joint initiative of the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) and the International Federation of Kidney Foundations (IFKF) and the day is set aside to raise awareness about the importance of the kidneys and how to reduce the frequency and impact of kidney disease and associated health problems worldwide.

According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), 850 million people worldwide are now estimated to have kidney diseases from various causes.

“Chronic kidney diseases (CKD) cause at least 2.4 million deaths per year and are now the 6th fastest growing cause of death. Acute kidney injury (AKI), an important driver of CKD, affects over 13 million people worldwide and 85 per cent of these cases are found in low and middle-income countries (LMICs).

“Around 1.7 million people are estimated to die annually because of AKI. Moreover, CKD and AKI are important contributors to increased morbidity and mortality from other diseases and risk factors including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, obesity, as well as infections such as HIV, malaria, tuberculosis and hepatitis,” the OECD said.

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