5 July 2017

Eritrea: International Fistula Day Observed

Asmara — International Fistula Day was observed on 4 July at national level in Mendefera featuring various programs.

The event was attended by Ms. Amina Nur Husein, Minister of Health, Ms. Tekea Tesfamichael, President of the National Union of Eritrean Women (NUEW), Government and PFDJ officials, representatives of UN organizations as well as members of the diplomatic corps.

Speaking at the occasion, Minister Amina, underlined that the Ministry of Health is exerting strong effort to prevent the prevalence of Fistula and harmful traditional practices through increased societal awareness.

Minister Amina further pointed out that a number of Fistula victims from all parts of the country have been treated free of charge in the National Fistula Referral Center in Mendefera while the patients have been provided with academic and various vocational training courses during their stay in the center in a bid to improve their living standards.

Dr. Habte Haylemelokot, Gynecologist, explained on the various causes of Fistula and mostly on cases that occur due to underage marriage and FGM.

Pointing out that Fistula has been among the leading causes of women's psychological and social problems at a global level, Dr, Ibrahim, UNFPA representative in Eritrea, indicated that his organization is working in partnership with the Ministry of Health in the efforts being exerted to eradicate Fistula.

The victims of Fistula who have been treated at the Fistula Center in Mendefera on their part explained that they were victims of harmful practices and are now able to lead a normal life after the treatment they received at the center.

Various educational and entertaining programs were staged in the event and awards were handed over to exemplary healthcare professionals as well as individuals and institutions that have been engaged in philanthropic activities in support of Fistula victims.

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