Bringing wellness to schools


The Ministry of Health announced it would start health programs in 100 schools selected as pilot projects.
The program, which starts after this Ethiopian New Year, has ten sections. The goal is to increase awareness in communicable diseases, WASH, hygiene, communicable diseases, hygiene vaccinations, first aid, sex education and environment protection.
Promotion of education and awareness regarding health, gender equality, the rights of children and disabilities are also encompassed in the program.
The pilot project will run from Kindergarten through college. The number of schools involved will eventually increase as will the number of health extension workers and health stations.
The cost is currently unknown.
Yordanos Alebachew, communication officer at the Ministry told Capital that this is critical for improving education performance and the well-being of our young people and the adults they will become.
‘’You will not bring the best productive citizens unless you work on the health of our students and as a government we have built many hospitals and health stations in all regions of the country but it is not enough and we should serve our students in the school,” he said.
He says the school emergency program will be also incorporated.
‘’There are numerous accidents that can happen in schools there may be a fire or another disaster and students should know how to protect themselves and their friends. The emergency program will help them to acquire basic skills and knowledge,” he said.
School health services are provided by medical, teaching and other professionals applied in or out of school to improve the health and well-being of children and in some cases whole families. They involve the early detection, correction, prevention or amelioration of disease, disability and abuse from which school aged children can suffer.
Ethiopia has opened schools throughout the country so now more people are able to receive an education than ever before but communicable diseases, nutritional and congenital health problems are prevalent among school children. One study showed over a quarter of school children had active trachoma. School health program help address these basic health needs of these children.