Foundation advocates collective efforts in tackling asthma in Nigeria

Posted by News Express | 13 May 2018 | 1,151 times

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•Asthmatic patient

The Amaka Chiwuike-Uba Foundation (ACUF) has called on the government, CSOs, development partners and other stakeholders to support asthma management in Nigeria. The Foundation noted that given the asthma prevalence, morbidity and mortality rate in Nigeria, all hands need to be on desk to first tackle environmental factors that trigger asthma and also provide the necessary support in terms of infrastructure, human resources capacity and other tools required for asthma management.

The Executive Director, Amaka Chiwuike-Uba Foundation (ACUF), Chiwuike Uba (CPA, FCNA), hailed giant steps taken by the foundation in the alleviation of conditions for persons living with asthma in Nigeria. The not-for-profit, non-partisan, non-governmental and charitable organisation established in 2016 in memory of his late wife, Mrs. Amaka Chiwuike-Uba, has been geared to improving the quality of life of people; especially, those with asthma and other respiratory diseases.

The ACUF, which was founded with the vision of a society with better breathing, better living, and a happier, united and prosperous people, carries out its objectives through the facilitation of evidence-based socio-economic research, policy dialogues/advocacy, training and education and networking.

In order to effectively and strategically carry out the programmes, projects and activities of the Foundation, the ACUF established three Centres of Excellence: the Center for Asthma, Allergy and Respiratory Conditions (CAARC); the Centre for Innovation, Youth, Rural and

Sustainable Development (CIYRSD), and the Centre for Leadership and Global Education (CeLGE).

In a review of the ACUF’s achievements for the year 2017, Uba recalled the foundation’s first conference which led to the production of the first-ever documentary on Asthma in Nigeria, titled “Together, we shall BEAT ASTHMA’. He noted that the annual asthma conference and series of research had impacted significantly on the country in many ways.

According to him, they had led to an increased awareness of asthma prevalence, causes and management, with over 90 percent impact on the knowledge of asthma among the conference participants. He insisted, furthermore, that the competency to manage asthma was impacted positively by over 90 percent of the Conference participants as a result of the information shared during the conference.

The Executive Director also noted that aside the research and annual asthma conference programme, the foundation recorded milestones in other programmes, with considerable progress in other areas including education and training, advocacy, networking and partnerships. He added that the foundation developed, published and disseminated factsheets, asthma information fliers and newsletters.

Despite the achievements, Uba bemoaned several challenges in obtaining funds to carry out other proposed programmes, projects and activities of the Foundation. He lamented the myriad of logistics and coordination problems which diminished research, intellectual and programmatic outputs. He, however, noted that the situation underscored the need for

institutional strengthening, development of infrastructure, enhanced human resources and better, more predictable funding to ensure more robust, sustained and longer-term organizational development and programming.

Nevertheless, Uba insisted that the prospects for 2018 looked very positive, saying that was a large scope for greater programming opportunities, interventions and research in the increasing demand for research and analytical work as bases for public policy, and as evidence tool for advocacy by private sector and civil society groups.

He disclosed the expected milestones for the year 2018 include the establishment of Asthma Crisis Management Centres in at least three states in each of the geopolitical zones; the continuation of the Physicians Asthma Management Education (PAME); Asthma and Respiratory

Management Workshop for Practice Nurses; Schools’ Education and Training Workshops on Asthma Management; Radio and TV Programmes on Asthma; Development, Printing and Distribution of Asthma Management Toolkit and Handbook; Development, Printing and Distribution of Asthma Basics for Children; Development, Printing and Distribution of Educational Resources and Forms (manuals, action plans, reference cards, fact sheets,

etc) on asthma; The Annual Asthma Conference with the theme: Better Breathing, Better Living: The Role of Governance and the Environment on Asthma Management and bringing Youth to Services and Youth Entrepreneurship Projects.

He called for a partnership to develop more strategic sources of funding in order to ensure sustainable long-term programming and improve the quality of life of people.

Source: News Express

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