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Pensioners Call For Drugs Subsidy To Manage Ailments

Some concerned pensioners across the country have urged government to provide drugs subsidy for pensioners and other senior citizens to mange their ailments amidst COVID-19 pandemic. 

They made this call in a study conducted by three researchers from Mass Communication Department, Kwara State University; Taiwo Adediran, Ibrahim Alabi and Oyewale Oyelola recently.

The researchers currently undergoing their Masters Programme at KWASU, interviewed some pensioners in Kwara and Oyo States to investigate how government have been supporting them in area of healthcare. 

The study revealed that cases of diabetes and hypertension are common among the aged people, category which many pensioners fall to.

Majority of the respondents lamented that there is no special medical care for pensioners and other senior citizens in the country. They also noted that non-payment or delay of pension/ gratuity has led to death of their colleagues.
Some of the pensioners urged the government to provide drug subsidy for them to enjoy good medical care after serving their country.

In his response, the
Secretary of Concerned Pensioners in Kwara State, Comrade Ayobamidele Ajibola said the state government never helped pensioners to access healthcare during COVID-19 pandemic.

According to him, It's unfortunate that kind of thing has never happen in this part of the world, especially in Nigeria. In the western world, it's a direct ball game where the health of the aged are being taken care of. We have never experienced such a thing in Kwara state and it's so bad. That is why many pensioners are dying daily.

Ayobamidele Ajibola added that delay or failure to pay our entitlement takes a toll on pensioners because many of them are old and rely on pension and gratuity to survive.

Also speaking, Mrs Elizabeth Adeyoola Adediran said ''there was nothing really done during the Covid-19 era to assist pensioners in Oyo state.

Mrs Adediran however advised government to send health officials to various gathering points of pensioners for test and provide drug at subsidized rates.

Speaking to the researchers, the Director of Public Health in Kwara State Ministry of Health, Dr Oluwatosin Fakayode said although shortage of fund has always been a challenge.

Dr Fakayode added that the present government through the State Health Insurance Agency has policies and schemes designed for the aged to access quality healthcare.

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