In preparation for the 2018 Hajj to the Holy Land of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Ministry of Health and Sanitation in its usual support has provided medical screening to intending pilgrims at the District Health Management Team, Cline Town in the east end of Freetown.
The medical screening is to prepare the intending pilgrims to be fit and healthy to perform the Hajj in Saudi Arabia and to return safely in Sierra Leone.
Speaking at the Hajj Screening Centre at Cline Town, the Medical Team Lead, Hajj 2018, Dr. Momodu Sesay said the 2018 Hajj to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is organized by the Ministry of Social Welfare Gender and Children’s Affairs as usual .
He said in the process of preparing pilgrims for the performance of Hajj, the Ministry of Health and Sanitation normally have processes that pilgrims has to undergo, adding that apart from the spiritual preparedness, they also have the medical preparedness for all intending pilgrims.
Dr. Momodu Sesay disclosed that handling the medical aspect of the preparedness for the pilgrims, the Health Ministry always carry out a screening process and the screening process is meant to interact with the intending pilgrims to try to find out what their medical problems are especially with chronic problems like hypertension, diabetes, heart diseases, asma and see how best they can help them prepare for the hajj.
He stated that the Ministry of Health and Sanitation has contributed greatly to this process because in the first place, they normally put a team of combine doctors and nurses to carry out the screening process. He said the Ministry also provides the venue and contribute towards the provision of drugs, vaccines and also laboratory staff to carry out laboratory test for the pilgrims.
He said the Health Ministry team comprises medical doctors, nurses and laboratory staff to carry out basic laboratory test for malaria parasite, blood sugar, blood grouping of people, adding that even this year, they added hyperthetis in to the process.
Dr. Momodu Sesay disclosed that this year the screening process started on the 19th July 2018 and is still on going. He said so far they have screened 671 intending pilgrims as of Monday August 6, 2018 of which 321 are males and 350 are females. He added that they are continuing this screening process for the next two to three days, hoping to cover the 800 intending pilgrims.
He said the medical team does not only stop medical screening in Freetown, but accompanied the intending pilgrims to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to support them in providing basic medical services for the severely ill pilgrims, and also taking them to the hospital were necessary. He added that the medical team will also established clinics in the hostels where they will be residing in Saudi Arabia to take care of minor cases and monitor their blood pressures, sugar level etc. until they returned safely back to Sierra Leone.
Dr. Sesay also stated that the Ministry of Health and Sanitation in preparedness for the hajj has provided drugs and vaccines including Meningitis and Yellow Fever vaccines for the intending pilgrims.