In order to curb maternal mortality rates among adolescents, the Ogun State Primary Health Care Development Board in collaboration with United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) is engaging health workers in some selected higher institutions of learning on ways to safeguard reproductive health of students.
Speaking during a visit to the Director of Health Services, Tai Solarin University of Education, Ijagun, Ijebu, Dr. Olugbenga Okusanya, which was preceding a 2-day training for the institution’s health workers, the Executive Secretary of the Board, Dr. Elijah Ogunsola, said the State government with the support of partners were passionate about student's wellness and wellbeing.
Dr. Ogunsola, according to the Board's Press Officer, Mrs. Fatimah Alatishe, was accompanied by the UNFPA team and other Board officials stated that a good ambience should be provided for students with essential reproductive health information that would guide them against unwanted pregnancy, unsafe abortion and maternal death.
The Board Executive Secretary commended the institution for the quality healthcare services being provided for the students, urging it to include various family planning services into its clinical services for easy access by the students.
On his part, the lead representative of the UNFPA, Dr. Akin Akinbajo said the organisation would always promote abstinence as the availability of contraceptives was not to encourage them to be sexually active, adding that it was committed to supporting the State on different Sexual Reproductive Health Information and Services for young people and adolescents.
Dr. Akinbajo noted that ''training of health workers is necessary to build a cordial relationship with the students, to enable them have confidence in speaking up on their reproductive health''.
Responding, the Director Health Services of the institution, Dr. Olugbenga Okusanya, represented by his deputy, Dr. Olufemi Osho lauded the efforts of the Board and UNFPA for the initiative, assuring that the institution would make maximum use of the training and other tips.
An awareness rally was thereafter held to sensitize students on availability of sexual reproductive health contraceptives in the institution's health facility, while HIV counselling and testing was done, as well as distribution of male and female condoms.