Empower legislation of disability Act – Foundation appeals

From Chidi Asonye, Umuahia

The Founder, Straight Child Foundation, Dr. Mrs. Peace Amaraegbulam, has called on the Federal Government to empower the legislation of the disability Act, especially on the free health care, to aid the disabled access healthcare facilities.

Amaraegbulam made the call at the GOPD consulting complex, Federal Medical Center FMC, Umuahia, Abia State, during the foundation’s special March edition of the parents support group programme to mark the year 2020 Cerebral Palsy Awareness month.

He, however, expressed dissatisfaction over the non-implementation of disability law, one year after its approval by the Federal Government.

The Consultant of Orthopaedic surgeon with the Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia and Chairman of the foundation had urged the federal and state governments’ interventions for children with cerebral palsy and other disabilities just as she stated that she looked forward to having a situation where early intervention care would really be adopted and instutionalised.

Her words: “There is this concept called neuroplasticity, which means that within the first three years of life, if you cannot turn the brain but you can modulate it. So when you detect early that this child has cerebral palsy or there are things in the child’s story that make you think this child has the potential to develop it, then you don’t really have to wait for the child to start manifesting it.

“That would mean that once you think this child is going to have cerebral palsy, you start a whole gamut of intervention services in physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy and all that and with that, they tend to function better.”

Responding to questions from journalists, the Team Leader of the Foundation, Dr Uchenna Oluwatosin, , said that early medical intervention for children with cerebral palsy would increase their mobility and improve their quality of life.

She re-emphasised the importance of early detection and intervention, saying it would help to mould their brain, adding, “the earlier you start, the more you are able to work on the neuroplasticity, the better result to get with the child”.

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