WHO reiterates commitment to improving adolescent health in Nigeria

The World Health Organization (WHO) pledges continued support to the Federal Government of Nigeria in its efforts to improve adolescent health towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in health.

The WHO Nigeria’s National Representative, (WR) Dr Walter Kazadi Mulombo, at the inauguration of the First African Conference and the Second Nigerian Adolescent Health Youth Conference in Abuja recently, said the adolescence phase is a unique stage in human development and an important time to lay the foundations for good health.

To promote a healthy lifestyle for the age group, WHO helped the government to develop three adolescent health and development policies from 2001 to 2025: the national adolescent health and development policy from 2021 to 2025, the national adolescent health and development implementation plan and Youth 2021-2025 and are a National Adolescent and Youth Health and Development Monitoring and Assessment Framework 2021-2025.

Speaking on behalf of Dr Mulombo at the conference on August 20, 2021, WHO Adolescent health technical officer Dr Joy Ufere said policies are focused on improving adolescent and youth health.

“The WHO The flagship program on adolescent health will continue to improve adolescent and youth health and development, through the production of evidence-based guidelines and recommendations to governments on adolescent health and health. adapted to adolescents with a view to achieving universal health coverage, ”said Dr Joy Ufere

She added that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development cannot be achieved without investing in adolescent health and well-being, including the achievement of its goals related to poverty, hunger, education, gender equality, water and sanitation, economic growth, human settlements, climate change and peaceful and inclusive societies.

Further, Dr Salma Anas Kolo, who represented the Nigerian Minister of Health at the conference, reiterated Nigeria’s commitment to adolescent well-being said, “As we reflect on the theme of the conference: Hold pledges: Optimize investments in health and reaffirm our commitments to the Global, Regional and National Agenda on Adolescent Health. In keeping with this administration’s campaign promises, the national aspiration is to invest in the health and well-being of adolescents and young people.

This administration believes this is essential to achieve the SDGs and demographic dividends. With adolescents making up around 16% of the world’s population, 23% of the population of sub-Saharan Africa, and 22% of the Nigerian population, it’s pretty clear that investing in this target group will fuel economic growth leading to increased productivity. , a decrease in health expenditure and an interruption of the intergenerational transmission of ill health, poverty and discrimination, among others.

The three-day conference from August 18 to 21, 2021 on the theme, Keeping the Promises: Maximizing Investment in Adolescent Health in Africa, organized by the Society for Adolescent and Young Peoples’ Health in Nigeria (SAYPHIN), is a convergence of thousands of actors working to improve the health and general well-being of adolescents and young people in Nigeria and across Africa. It also presented a unique opportunity for stakeholders working in the adolescent space, policy makers and young people to assess progress made in realizing the promises related to adolescents and young people.

Other dignitaries present at the three-day event were Shonga’s Emir Dr Haliru Yahaya, professional associations and academics in the field of adolescent health. WHO Regional Director for Africa, United Nations agencies, civil society organizations and non-governmental organizations.

Adolescence is a phase of life between the ages of 10 and 19 and an important time to lay the foundations for good health. The period is characterized by an important physical, psychological and social transition. Although considered a stage of life, more than 1.1 million adolescents die each year from preventable causes such as traffic accidents, suicide and interpersonal violence.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of the World Health Organization (WHO) – Nigeria.

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