Controversy over the distribution of medicines to adolescent girls in Mogtédo: the MCD provides clarification

The distribution of medicines, in particular acid and iron, to young girls at the Mogtédo departmental high school, has been criticized since March 3 on social networks by conspiracy theorists and by parents worried about not have been informed previously. The AIB approached the city health district to find out more. Faced with this controversy, the Chief Medical Officer of the health district (MCD) of Zorgho, Dr Delphin Kaboré, wanted to provide clarifications. According to him, there was a first publication reporting on the distribution of tablets without platelets to girls at the Mogtédo departmental high school then a second publication by the same author which specifies that it concerns iron and folic acid. . On the first publication, the MCD says it does not recognize itself, on the other hand, it found that the second publication tends towards reality. According to him, this is not an anarchic distribution of medicines, but rather the implementation of an iron and folic acid supplementation campaign, carried out for four years by local health authorities with the support of UNICEF. Started in the communes of Zam and Zorgho, UNICEF then enabled the campaign to be extended to all 8 communes of the province of Ganzourgou and the health district of Ziniaré. He clarified that in addition to iron and folic acid, there are also dewormers that are distributed to girls and also boys. According to Dr Kaboré, this campaign aims to prevent anemia among young girls aged 10 to 19, who are particularly prone to this condition due to the onset of their menstruation; the ultimate goal being to reduce maternal and infant mortality. According to him, the distribution of these drugs falls within a well-defined framework, having benefited from careful planning and communication upstream. Education authorities as well as community leaders were informed of the campaign, and primary, post-primary and secondary schools were chosen as distribution points due to the concentration of the target. The head nurses (ICP) and all health workers responsible for distributing medicines were also invited to raise awareness among teachers and students about the issues surrounding this iron and folic acid supplementation. 'I want the population to know that the health district is at operational level. We are here to implement the health policy that is issued at the central level. (…) Let everyone reassure themselves that it is for the good of the population. And health workers are open. If there are misunderstandings somewhere, they can approach us to get the right information. » Said Dr Delphin Kaboré It should be noted that this campaign took place on February 1 and 2 in all the communes of the province of Ganzourgou. However, despite these awareness and distribution efforts, communication gaps persist, fueling rumors and doubts. It is therefore essential to distinguish rumor from reality. The distribution of medicines to girls at the Mogtédo departmental high school is part of a legitimate anemia prevention campaign, benefiting from the supp ort of health and international authorities. However, additional communication efforts are necessary to ensure better understanding and support of the population for such public health initiatives. Source: Burkina Information Agency

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