FG To Launch Neurodevelopment Disorders Strategy
- Written by Oluwafemi Olowookere
Federal Government is set to develop a National Strategy for Neurodevelopment disorders in Nigeria with a view to managing children and their families with such challenges.
President Muhammadu Buhari made this known recently, in Abuja while speaking at the launch and presentation of a book titled “Neurodevelopment Disorders: Enhancing Everyday Life” written by a Doctor of Philosophy in Complex Adaptive System, Dr. Austin Ameachi, from Brunel University, United Kingdom.
Buhari who was represented by the Hon. Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, said that the strategy would state clearly, measures to be taken in addressing Neurodevelopment Disorders.
He said “as a matter of deliberate policy, my administration will launch a consultation on a new enhanced national strategy for Neurodevelopmental Disorders”
Buhari said that an Implementation Advisory Group will be established to monitor delivery and progress, adding that there would be a collaboration between health, education and other sectors that provide social services to the down syndrome group.
The President said that his administration would ensure that diagnostic and therapeutic services professionals are provided with education and training to address the knowledge gap on developmental disorders.
Speaking on partnership with States’ government to address lack of neurodevelopmental disorders support services, President Buhari said that health is on the concurrent legislative list, and so, each state should provide services that would ameliorate neurodevelopmental disorders.
“We must create partnerships between healthcare professionals, teachers and schools if we are to achieve substantive improved outcomes. I call on all to join hands with government to ensure effective management of people with neurodevelopmental disorders as well as the provision of support to their families” Buhari said.
Earlier, the author of the book, Dr. Austin Ameachi, said that he was inspired to write the book not because he is a medical doctor, but because his son had neurodevelopmental disorder. He said the book was written to give hope to parent of children living with such conditions and make them understand that it was not their fault.
He said neurodevelopmental disorders are a group of conditions which commences mostly in the developmental period, and characterized by developmental deficits that produce impairment of personal, social, academic or occupational functioning.
Austin said “the book is written to educate on the common signs and symptoms of selected neurodevelopmental disorder, encourage early clinical diagnosis and therapeutic intervention”
In his remarks, the Minister of FCT, Alh. Muhammad Musa Bello, represented by the Secretary, FCT Social Services Secretariat, Alh Oladimeji Ali Hassan, said that FCT administration has elaborate social services Programme that includes provision of care and support to the children with neurodevelopmental disorder and their families.