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Macleans partners with Lagos on healthcare

In a bid to promote good healthcare service among pregnant mothers, new born babies  and children under five years, and also fight against those killer diseases that force the rate of mortality high,  Macleans, a premium brand of GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria Plc, now partners  with Lagos State Ministry of Health to ensure that necessary awareness is brought to the bearing of  nursing  mothers  and babies and that the right type of vaccines and nutrition capable of  preserving their lives are taken.


In a grand finale of the healthcare exercise, “May 2010 Round of  Maternal, New born and Child Health week in Lagos, Brand Manager, Macleans, Mrs Toyin Yusuf, said, Macleans supported the initiative because it wants mothers, new borns and children  under 5 in Lagos to live healthy and Nigerians as well “because we believe that health is wealth”.

She said Macleans as  a leading healthcare company will continue to promote good health in Lagos and in Nigeria.
Yusuf said, “in this fight against malnutrition, diseases like malaria and others, Macleans is set to train over 1000 primary school health teachers in Lagos to make sure lives are saved.

“The training which  is organized in conjunction with the School Healthcare Unit of the Lagos State Ministry of Health, will take place in all the 20 Local Government Areas of the State,” she said.

Similarly, the Honourable Commissioner for Health, Lagos Sate, Dr. Jide Idris in his address at the ceremony thanked Macleans for partnering with Lagos on healthcare scheme.

He said, “It is a known fact that maternal, peri-natal and children (under 5 years) health is one of the most important issues that determine national well-being.  When aggregated, this group (i.e. women of child bearing age and under-5 year olds) represents over 42 percent of the state total population, apart from their constituting a vulnerable group.   The statistics depicting the maternal and child health status in Nigeria is not cheering.

True, every minute in a day, somewhere in the world, a woman dies due to complications arising from pregnancy and childbirth such that this represents the leading causes of death  among women of reproductive age.  In Nigeria, 150 of such women die daily, with hemorrhage i.e. post-partum bleeding, infection i.e. sepsis, malaria, anemia, obstructed labour, unsafe abortion and toxaemia/eclampsia representing the leading causes of death.”

This translates to Nigeria constituting only 2 percent of the world population and accounting for 10 percent of global maternal mortality burden (though there are wide regional variations with south-west recording the lowest).

For every death, there are 25-30 morbidities, 4 percent of which are severe and crippling e.g. uterine prolapse, fistulate, pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility.  The tragedy is that these women die not from disease but during the normal, life-enhancing process of procreation.  Even more tragic is the fact that most of these deaths and morbidities are avoidable if preventive measures are taken and adequate care available.

Maternal and peri-natal health has emerged as the most important issue that determines global and national wellbeing.  This is because every individual, family and community is, at some point, intimately involved in pregnancy and the success of childbirth.  Global statistics for child health do not fare better.  Each day, 528 newborns die with 74% of these deaths occurring in the first week of life.  2,700 under-5s die daily with malaria and neonatal causes accounting for over 50 percent of these deaths.  Loss of a child increases the tendency of a woman to want to get pregnant again, hence the adoption of the Integrated Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health (IMNCH) Strategy at the 51st National Council on Health held in Lagos in 2007 essentially to simultaneously tackle issues relating to neonatal, infant, child and maternal mortality.

The IMNCH Strategy comprises high impact intervention packages that address the main causes of maternal, newborn and child deaths at community and health facility levels.  It focuses on integrating maternal, newborn and child health services along the life cycle at all levels.  It thus represents a paradigm shift – changing the way we do business to foster a continuum of care for mothers, newborns and children in an integrated manner.

The goal is essentially to reduce maternal, neonatal and child morbidity and mortality in line with MDGs 4 & 5.  It was developed out of the realization that most deaths and morbidities are occurring because we are failing to provide high impact and cost effective interventions (services) to the majority of mothers and children.
With full implementation of the IMNCH strategy, we could prevent up to 72 percent of neonatal deaths; more than 70 percent of under-5 deaths and two-thirds (62%) of maternal deaths.  In absolute terms, more than 200,000 mothers and 6 million children lives can be saved by 2015.

It is within this context that the Child Health Week became to be known and celebrated as the Maternal, Newborn and Child Health.  The week also has an objective the improvement of the health seeking-behaviour of the whole family especially mothers and caregivers of children under the age of 5 years, by providing an integrated, high-impact and low-cost package of protective, preventive and promotive services to the whole family.

These include routine immunization, Vitamin A supplementation, growth monitoring and promotion, and distribution of deworming medicine, and IEC materials.  In addition, tetanus toxoid will be given to women of child-bearing-age, who will also be counseled on key household practices like exclusive breastfeeding, complementary feeding and basic hygiene.

Antenatal care and family planning service will also be provided.  It is thus a week of action for maternal, newborn and child health and survival through existing routine activities.

since 2003, Lagos State has celebrated the Child Health Week annually until 2007 when it was celebrated twice.  The “week” has grown in popularity over the years to the extent that at the 2009 National Council on Health Meeting in Asaba, the Federal Government, in agreement with all State Ministries of Health, adopted same and declared that the week be renamed Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) Week and should be celebrated on a national scale twice a year (May and November).

The week is thus henceforth to be a fundamental part of the Integrated Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (IMNCH) Strategy, a high profile initiative put together by the Federal Ministry of Health and adopted at the National Council of Health meeting that held in Lagos in 2007 to fast track the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4 and 5 in Nigeria i.e. Reducing Child Mortality and Improving Maternal Health.

Mrs. Oyebanjo further stated that, Macleans as a brand of GSK, is focused on improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer. “As a leading healthcare company, this informed our partnership with the Lagos State Ministry of Health to train health teachers on oral care. By this, we are expanding our contributions to oral care for the society and restating the brand values,” she said.

The Marketing helmsman explained that the brand has supported many dental health programmes by providing logistics, products and educational materials on oral healthcare for Lagos State Ministry of Health. The supported programmes include: Schools Oral Screening (primary schools), Children Dental Health Month and Community Dental Education Health (CODEH).

In his own remarks, the Commissioner for Health, Lagos State, Dr. Jide Idris, who was represented by Dr Jemilade Longe – Director of Family Health & Nutrition in the Ministry stated that, the issue of oral hygiene in schools falls under the School Health Program.

Due to its importance and cost-effectiveness, the School Health Program was revitalized by the Ministry in 2006 to ensure that school children learn in a conducive environment and in good health. As the school offers one of the most organized and powerful systems in society through which the health and wellbeing of children who attend it can be positively influenced.

He further added that, GlaxoSmithKline in response to its corporate social responsibility has developed a positive relationship with Lagos State Ministry of Health and rendered support to the Ministry’s School Health Program which includes generous distribution of free Macleans toothpaste to public primary school pupils during the medical and dental screening. Printing of posters and IEC materials on oral health hygiene and care of the mouth.

As a way of sustaining good oral hygiene and restating the brand commitment to consumers, Macleans has offered to collaborate with the Ministry of Health in the training of health education teachers in public primary schools in the state on “Oral Hygiene”.
The Brand Manager Macleans, Mrs. Toyin Yusuf said that, “Macleans variants: Freshmint, Complete Care and Herbal are formulated with high quality standards. The products have consistently met the quality standard in Nigeria as monitored by Standard Organization of Nigeria ( SON ) as well as the global quality standard. It is important to mention that, Macleans Freshmint won the SON Gold Award last year.”

According to her, the brand is committed to promoting and educating Nigerians on the need to take good care of their oral cavity by supporting activities on the program.

GSK, maker of Macleans Variants of toothpastes, is one of the world’s leading research-based pharmaceutical and Healthcare companies and is committed to its Mission of ‘’improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer’’.

GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria Plc declares 19% increase in turnover GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria Plc has announced 19% increase in turnover from N12.54billion to N14.95billion in its 2009 financial year. Profit before tax and after tax were N2.469billion and N1.702billion respectively, which represent 33% increase over the same period in 2008.

Speaking at the 39th Annual General Meeting, the Chairman of GlaxoSmithKline, Chief Olusegun Osunkeye, OON, said that “the company’s performance reflected the outcome of its continued strategies, a synergy through an operating model where everybody is a winner. This has enabled the company to remain profitable despite the challenging business environment.”

Chief Osunkeye disclosed that the company has embarked on the construction of N4.7billion global manufacturing supply site to further consolidate on the company’s market share.

The Chairman further explained that, the company invested in recruitment, retention and development of employees in 2009 to enhance performance. “Proactive initiatives attracted specialty and leadership in the company. Our continued focus on human capital development remains our strategic imperative for sustainable growth.”

He stated that GSK has continued to liaise with government agencies, especially, the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control and customers to address the issues of counterfeits, fake drugs and parallel imports.

“The environment in which the consumer healthcare business operates has become more challenging. Consumers are demanding better quality, value and improved performance. Additional retailers are consolidating their operations, strengthened by their negotiation power.

More consumers are effectively resisting price increases by switching to competing brands and substitutes. GSK would continue to deploy effective strategies to deliver long-term financial performance despite the uncertainties,” he noted.

According to him, despite the various challenges, the company believes that Nigeria presents great business opportunities that will produce significant dividends if harnessed by deploying right strategies.’’

GSK Nigeria in conjunction with GSK Worldwide invested over N25million in 2009 in various community partnership projects in Nigeria . The projects were aimed at increasing access to healthcare as well as empower Nigerians at the grass roots.

GSK is a science-based pharmaceutical and  healthcare company with a mission of improving the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer.


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