World Sickle Cell Day: Foundation calls for establishment of specialized hospitals, provision of free drugs 

Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
A Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Save Cell Foundation has called on the Federal Government to establish at least a specialized hospital in each of the 36 states of the federation to provide healthcare solely for the sufferers of sickle cell disorder.
The founder of the NGO, Mrs Oluwabusayomi Soretire made the call on Tuesday, in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, while leading a walk tagged ‘First Red Umbrella Walk and Warriors Party’ organized by Save Cell Foundation, to commemorate the 2024 World Sickle Cell Day.
While disclosing that the walk was organized to give hope to the patients of sickle cell disorder and their parents as well as calling the attention of the world to their plight, she emphasized that the government must develop a workable healthcare policy that will provide them with quality healthcare.
Oluwabusayomi added that the specialized hospital, if established by the government, will go a long way in ameliorating the pains sickle cell disorder patients go through while trying to get medical attention in  normal hospitals.
She further urged the government at all levels to ensure that they increase the employment opportunities given to warriors against sickle cell disorder, noting that doing so will help in reducing their traumas and eradicate stigmatization.
The Save Cell founder, who said no fewer than 100 warriors fighting against sickle cell disorder would be given food items and health kits by her Foundation to commemorate the 2024 World Sickle Cell Day, remarked that the disease is not a death sentence, urging people living with the disorder not to lose hope but fight on.
She, however, charged parents of warriors not to stigmatize against them or segregate them, rather, they should show them love, care and compassion to live and achieve their life dreams.
Also speaking, a warrior against sickle cell disorder, Atinuke Alabi, appealed to the Federal Government to make free drugs available for people living with sickle cells, noting that several warriors have died because they could not afford the exorbitant cost of their drugs
She argued that if People Living With HIV could be considered for free medication, warriors should also benefit from the free drugs programme by the government, to provide succour for them and enhance their healthcare services.

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