Bayelsa Times

Group conducts medical outreach for drivers, traders in Bayelsa


A women advocacy group, Standup for Women Society (SWS), Bayelsa chapter, on Sunday, conducted free medical outreach for drivers and traders in the state.
The group said that the medical outreach, held at the popular Ekeki motor park in Yenagoa, the state capital, was aimed at marking its first anniversary.

More than 250 drivers, traders and those doing business around the area benefited from the exercise.

The health awareness component of the medical outreach focused on the dangers of high blood pressure.

The South South Zonal Coordinator of the group, Mrs Timinipre Idoko, said that the exercise had become imperative because of the danger posed by blood pressure on the people, especially traders, who barely had time to do regular checks.

She said that the group decided to target drivers because their work involved serving humanity, adding that if any of them developed high blood pressure complications while driving, the passengers and others could be at risk.

Idoko said that the screening and sensitisation had helped several traders and commuters to be aware of the dangers of high blood pressure and how best to manage it.

Earlier in address of welcome, Chairperson of the society in Bayelsa, Ms Eunice Nnachi, said that the importance of knowing the blood pressure status could not be over-emphasised, while ignorance could lead to sudden death.

Nnachi said, “There are cases involving strokes and heart attacks, some of which could have been avoided with timely diagnosis and treatment of high blood pressure.

“Often, cardiac and stroke patients experience life threatening injuries which require extensive ongoing treatment, and a number of these cases could be prevented.

“We will encourage everyone to get to know their status and check their blood pressure regularly so that they can seek advice and treatment.”

The group also dispensed free drugs to those diagnosed of high blood pressure, while some were referred for further medical attention.

Also speaking, a pharmacist and public health educator, Mr Abila Promise, who described high blood pressure as a silent killer, said most people suffering from the disease were not aware of it.

He said that the enlightenment was important because people were guided on how to take their drugs, warning those suffering from it to reduce the salt intake in their food.

“Blood pressure doesn’t have many symptoms. The only symptom it may give is headache, and not everybody will even have the headache; that is why it is good to check it regularly.

“Aside taking drugs, people with high blood pressure should reduce salt intake and check their weights because it is one of the factors that can lead to high blood pressure.

“To avoid high blood pressure issue, people should eat more fruits than meat, especially as they age,” Abila said.

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