one-nimba-house-logo

Are There Still Hope for Those Living with Epilepsy in Rural Communities Across Liberia?

Our hearts are bleeding as we seeing some of our children in this community dying slowly day after another. We are calling on the government like was done years back to provide the medication because our children who suffering from these conditions never prayed to have them and it is a sickness that can treat anybody at any time. Are there still hopes for our children?’’ he said in tears.
Help Minimize Epilesy

By: Edmund C. Gbarwee/Nimba D-9 TV Public Health Reporter

Email: nimbad9tv2018@gmail.com/+231778070604

Disclaimer: Photos used below are not photos of the deceased but are photos from August 2022 health event in Boyee and Zekepa

Sahnpa, Nimba County Liberia: – According to Oxford Dictionary, Epilepsy is neurological disorder marked by sudden recurrent episodes of sensory disturbance, loss of consciousness, or convulsions, associated with abnormal electrical activity in the brain.

Reports reaching this paper have it that a teenager in her late 20s has been found dead in Sahnpa, Blinlon Administrative District, Yarwin Mehnsonnoh Statutory District, Nimba County Electoral District Nine Liberia West Africa. According to the father of the deceased, Pastor Nelson Bolo who old our contributor that his daughter has long suffered from this condition for many years before her demised without proper treatment because the medication is hard to find and it is very expensive when found. “Every day, she was to take a pill of the medication and poor us where do we have the money from and even when you get the money is not just easy to find the medicine. Our hearts are bleeding as we seeing some of our children in this community dying slowly day after another. We are calling on the government like was done years back to provide the medication because our children who suffering from these conditions never prayed to have them and it is a sickness that can treat anybody at any time. Are there still hopes for our children?’’ he said in tears.

The deceased father speaking furthered to our Contributor said, the deceased who suffered from Epilepsy had had seizures for days and became very violent when they placed her indoor for safety. ‘We have absolutely no safer homes for them and this is sad for us.

Boyee Clinic

Unconfirmed reports yet to be verified, is, she escaped the house through the window and went missing. After two days of searched, she was found dead in the bush.

To minimize this condition, In 2022 August, a team of Public Health Volunteers (PHVs) headed by Edmund C. Gbarwee a Public Health Practitioner, Chaired by Antoinette Weh-Johnson a Social Worker, The Ministry of Health Mental Health Division, Women Empowerment Forum Liberia, Nimba D-9 TV, SAMBLET-LIBERIA, Pharmacist Joseph Saye Quoi, including other stakeholders and the Representative of Nimba County Electoral District Nine Prof. Johnson N. Gwaikolo did a social media fundraiser under the theme: “There is Still Hope” and was able to provide free medical treatment to over 200 patients at Boyee Clinic and Zekepa Health Center in Yarwin Mehnsonnoh Health District who are suffering from this Mental Health(MH) condition  inclusive of the provision of food and other non-medical supplies like slippers, rice, soaps, toothbrush and paste, clothes amongst others. There are huge success stories and calls for a repeat of this process as we await on government through the Ministry of Health in taking seize of this matter. You can read full article of their activities by clicking this link:  https://onenimbahouse.com/a-public-health-practitioner-leads-campaign-to-minimize-epilepsy-in-nimba/ Source: The One Nimba House Media Inc (Nimba D-9 TV)

In Liberia according to our research, around 9% of Liberians are reported to suffer from Mental Health (MH) conditions, epilepsy or addiction, and 3% from a “severe form” of these conditions (MoH Liberia, 2016). However, due to underreporting these numbers are likely higher. In a recent literature review (Epilepsy Working

Group, 2020), no epilepsy research focusing exclusively on Liberia.

Despite the burden of these conditions in Liberia, less than 1% of Liberians have access to clinical MH services (Abramowitz, 2017); Liberian authorities consider MH as a major public health problem; the Mental Health Policy and Strategic Plan for Liberia 2016- 2021 completed by the MoH in collaboration with WHO and other agencies is well-organized and supported by law. However, due to lack of government resources directed to the initiative, in the year that this plan ends, many major objectives have not been covered. These factors may contribute to the fact that many people in both rural and urban areas rely on religious and traditional healers instead of accessing formal healthcare systems; around 34% of patients in

the MSF cohort received previous treatment from religious and traditional healers only, and 32% from both religious and traditional healers as well as other clinical professionals (Source: Dr. Rosie Wilson, Anthropologist Contributor: Justine Hallard, Project Coordinator)

The prevalence of epilepsy is high in Blinlon, Zehnla, Gbi&Doru Administrative Districts and Gblor-Dialah (Gblor Chiefdom) Nimba County respectively. The situation is very serious to the extent that many of the patients are rejected and neglected by their parents and caregivers because they see them as witch-crafts.

This situation continues to lead many young and promising citizens dead and they continue to wonder ‘’If There is Still Hope’’ for them.

Research alert is out to fully study and understand why, this condition is prevalence in the above communities.

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
WhatsApp

Urgent Call to Rehabilitate Lifeline Bridge Connecting Zekepa Health Center and Zekeh Memorial High School in Yarwin Mehnsonnoh Statutory District

“The state of the bridge is a critical concern,” Payzine emphasized. “In emergencies, every second counts, and this bridge could mean the difference between life and death for our people. Its rehabilitation is not just a matter of convenience but a matter of survival. An engineer estimated the cost to be US$4,000”

Read More »