By: Simon Ushie.
The Director General, Cross River State Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr Janet Ekpenyong is admonishing couples to consider taking up family planning methods that may suit them during the prolonged nationwide lockdown to avoid unplanned babies beyond the economic status of families .
The Director General,Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Dr Janet Ekpenyong made the admonition when she led a team of health workers in the Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency to various locations including the sea food market (Beach market), Watt market and other commercial centres in Calabar Municipal and Calabar South said young men and women who have attained sexual maturation should assist Government in population control by adopting family planning methods before entering into any intimate relationship especially at this period when people are asked to spend more time at home with their families.
The DG urged young women of child bearing age along with their partners to visit health facilities closest to them for advice on methods which may be peculiar to them.
She stated that reproductive heath like every other health conditions requires the services of expert and professionals in order to gain optimal results and avoid complications that may possibly arise.
Dr Ekpenyong who spoke in both Efik and pidgin English also admonished them to take all Covid19 precautionary measures seriously as she disclosed that the government under the leadership of Senator Professor Ben Ayade has provided personal protective equipments as well as shutting of the borders leading into the state to prevent the spread of the virus to the state while also assuring them of improved welfare packages for the poor and vulnerable groups in the state.
“I must appreciate the effort of our digital Governor,Senator Professor Ben Ayade who’s proactive nature has kept the state Covid-19 free, sure that at this moment of lock down, we all now have to spend better time with our spouses and as you know, they say body no be firewood, the result of it may be you ending up having children by chance and not by choice which may not match with your economic status for now and that is why we are here in beach market, we have gone to other places as well to sensitize people about Covid-19 and also family planning and contraceptive use.
Family planning is when you and your spouse agree on the number of children you wish to have and the spacing between each child, there are many methods and that is why we are here today to ensure that you know what it’s all about so that you can make up your mind on which to go for”.
“There are many methods, not just the use of condom, because these methods are peculiar to individuals, we want to advice you all to visit our facilities so that you end up having the one that suits your body system and convenient to you partner “.
The sensitization exercise had staff of the Cross River State Primary Healthcare Development Agency including Mrs Elizabeth Umawu(Desk officer for family planning),Mrs Emem Achibong(Director ,Local Government Health Authority, Calabar south)and many other staff who displayed practical hand washing techniques as a means to fight covid19.
Currently, family planning is said to be the only vaccine against mother and child mortality, with thousands of women dying daily at child birth and weeks after delivery, all hands must be on deck to promote family planning and contraceptive usage among partners to increase their chances of having a healthier reproductive life and to reduce the rate of abandoned children in the street.