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Mombasa County commemorates World Sickle Cell disease awareness day

The Mwembe Tayari Dispensary has been set aside as a clinic for the management and treatment of sickle cell disease.

Mombasa County government, in partnership with the Children Sickle Cell Foundation, commemorated World Sickle Cell Day 2023 at the Mwembe Tayari Dispensary located in the Central Business District (CBD).

The County Coordinator of Non-communicable Diseases, Esha Bakari, said that World Sickle Cell Awareness Day is meant to identify people living with sickle cell disease. This year’s theme is “bridging the goal towards optimum care and control of sickle cell disease.”

“Sickle cell is when the red blood cells contort in a sickle shape, which is different from the healthy red blood cells,” explained Bakari. She said many people live without realising that they may be carriers of sickle cell disease, thus the need to create awareness.

County Director of Public Health Dr. Salma Swaleh noted that identifying children suffering from sickle cell disease is a priority in their strategic plan.

She appreciated the Sickle Cell Foundation for equipping the Mwembe Tayari Dispensary with modern equipment.

“There has been a lot of sensitisation at the community level, Community Health Promoters (CHPs) have been educated on sickle cell for them to identify children with sickle cell disease,” said Swaleh.

Swaleh said the Mombasa Care Programme will offer NHIF coverage for chronic illnesses like sickle cell disease.

She encouraged sickle cell patients to seize the opportunity by registering to access the coverage that will enable them to access medical services for free.

On his part, Frednard Kai, Officer in Charge of Mwembe Tayari Dispensary, said that through the CHPs, they have been educating the community on the sickle disease through barazas, community outreaches, and community dialogues to combat stigmatization and myths.

By Wangari Mwangi and Mariah Assumpta

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