The Oyo State Government has sensitised Journalists on the need for aggressive campaign against infodemic on vaccination for Covid-19, tuberculosis and other communicable diseases.
This is in order to reduce the prevalence of the diseases across the state.
The state Disease Surveillance Notification Officer, Dr Titilope Akinleye, made the disclosure, in Ibadan, at a one-day sensitisation programme on infectious diseases and vaccination, organised for journalists in Oyo State.
Akinleye stated that at the inception of the Covid-19 outbreak in 2020, 85,000 samples were tested, out of which there were 10,316 confirmed cases and out of the number, 10,060 recovered, while the state recorded 202 deaths.
She however, stressed the need for more awareness in order to keep residents abreast of the development regarding the prevalence of Covid-19, Tuberculosis and other communicable diseases.
In his remark, the State Commissioner for Health, Dr Bode Ladipo thanked the organisers for the initiative.
Dr Bode noted that with the increasing cases of Covid-19, tuberculosis and other communicable diseases in the country, all stakeholders must pitch in to put an end to the prevalence of these diseases.
Dr Bode was represented by the Director of Public Health, Dr Olubunmi Ayinde.
The representative of the World Health Organisation, WHO, Dr Philip Zorto, encourged Journalists to rise up to the task of providing adequate information on infectious diseases to members of the public and to always check their facts before putting stories out in the public.
Similarly, the State Epidemiologist, Dr Akinfemi Akinyode, noted that the training was organised to ensure that Journalists have the necessary information about Covid-19 and other diseases, so that appropriate messages could be passed to the members of the public.
On her part, the Chairperson of the Oyo State branch of the Nigeria Association of Women Journalists, NAWOJ, Comrade Jadesola Ajibola, urged Journalists to base their reports on preventive measures rather than on the hazzards or negative sides of the stories.
She called on the government to recognise Journalists as frontline workers during emergencies and give them hazard allowances just like health workers.
The programme, facilitated by the Oyo state NAWOJ, in collaboration with the State Emergency Operations Centre, EOC, was supported by the WHO to strengthen and broaden the knowledge of Journalists on Covid-19 related issues and to set agenda for the coming days in sensitising the public.