Seoul, South Korea CNN
Baby fair season is here once again in South Korea. Hectic, noisy affairs conducted in cavernous conference rooms where hundreds of vendors try to sell parents-to-be everything they could possibly want for their new bundle of joy, and many other things they never knew they needed.
But this is a declining business, and the customer base is dwindling.
South Korea recently broke its own record for the world's lowest fertility rate. Figures released in November showed the average number of children a South Korean woman will have in her lifetime dropped to just 0.79.
That is well below the 2.1 needed to maintain a stable population and low even compared to other developed countries where the rate is falling, such as the United States (1.6) and Japan, which recorded its own rate at 1.3. lowest recorded.
And it spells trouble for a country with an aging population facing a looming shortage of workers to support its pension system.
The problem is often blamed on economic factors that have prevented young people from having families (high real estate prices, the cost of education, and increased financial anxiety), but it has turned out to be beyond the ability of successive governments to fix it, regardless of how much money is spent. in that
Critics say it is a sign that the problems go beyond the economy and that a change of approach is needed. Whether the government is listening is another matter.
During a visit to a kindergarten in September, South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol admitted that more than $200 billion has been spent trying to increase the population in the past 16 years.
However, since he took office in May, his administration has come up with few ideas to solve the problem other than continuing in a similar vein: establishing a committee to discuss the issue and pledging even more financial support for newborns. The monthly allowance for parents with babies up to 1 year old will increase from the current 300,000 won to 700,000 won ($230 to $540) in 2023 and to 1 million Korean won ($770) by 2024, according to Yoon's management.
Public skepticism that Yoon has a better grip on the issue than his predecessors has only been bolstered by the president's sometimes clumsy messaging.
During his visit to the nursery, Yoon expressed surprise that babies and toddlers were not being cared for at home and seemed to suggest that it was common for 6-month-old babies to be able to walk, prompting criticism that he was out of touch. control. touch (the average age for babies to walk is more like 12 months).
Many experts believe that the current money-wasting approach is too one-dimensional and that instead what is needed is ongoing support throughout the child's life.
Browsing the booths at a recent baby fair was Kim Min-jeong, whose second child is due this month. She brushed aside the government's promise of more funding, saying: "They've changed the names and merged the allocations, but for parents like us, there are no more benefits."
The problem she faces, she said, is that she has not been able to work since her first child was born, as she and her husband cannot afford private child care.
Government-funded daycare centers are free, but a handful of scandals in recent years involving caregivers beating babies have put off many parents. While the cases were minimal, they were well publicized and the CCTV footage was emotional.
Also standing in the way of prospective parents are a number of issues that are more social than economic in nature and likely to endure no matter how much money is spent.
Among them are what might be called the unwritten rules for parenthood.
While having a baby is highly expected of married couples in South Korea, society still disapproves of single parents. IVF treatment is not offered to single women, official hospital figures show.
“We still have a very puritanical approach to single mothers,” said law professor Cho Hee-kyoung, who writes a newspaper column on social issues.
“It's like they did something wrong by getting pregnant out of wedlock… Why does it necessarily have to be inside a marriage to be able to raise a child?”
Meanwhile, couples in non-traditional unions also face discrimination; South Korea does not recognize same-sex marriage, and regulations make it difficult for unmarried couples to adopt.
Lee Jin-song, who has written books on the trend of young people choosing not to marry or have a baby, said policies to increase the birth rate must go beyond the traditional idea of marriage between one man and one woman. . woman.
“I have thought about how heterocentric and normalcy-focused the discussion is in the traditional sense of marriage…it excludes people with disabilities, illnesses or reproductive ill health,” Lee said.
Lee pointed to a common joke that in South Korea, "if you're not dating at 25, you'll turn into a crane, which means if you're single you become non-human."
She said society considers her, and others like her, selfish for not conforming to traditional expectations of marriage and children, "neglecting their duties to society just for the sake of their happiness."
Lee highlighted the pressures of bearing children on women in a slowly evolving patriarchal society. “Marriage, childbirth and childcare require too much sacrifice for women in a patriarchal society, especially during the last decade. So, they are starting to explore the possibility of being able to live well without getting married.”
Professor Cho agreed, saying there is a persistent social expectation that the father sacrifices for the company and the mother supports the family, even if she also works.
“I know many couples where the women earn more money than the men, but when they come home, it is the women who have to do the housework, take care of the children and provide emotional support to the husband.”
Meanwhile, husbands who would like to be more involved in raising children find that the business culture in South Korea doesn't always allow for that.
While parental leave has been increased on paper, few feel comfortable taking it in full.
Back at the baby fair, Kim's husband, Park Kyung-su, said he hopes to help with their second child, but “there is no special understanding or treatment at work for having a small child. I can use my free time, but I feel uncomfortable using it because I want good feedback at work."
There is a widespread fear that workers who are promoted are rarely the ones who put family first.
Lee Se-eun, who has two children ages 3 and 5, said she would appreciate more help from her husband, but he rarely makes it home on time.
“It would be good for companies to recognize employees with babies, for example, to exclude them from dinners or nights out,” he said.
In South Korea, work doesn't end when the office closes for the day. Rather, there is a culture of "team building" after hours, which is frowned upon to miss out on.
Lee used to work at a brokerage firm before launching her own company, but she hasn't worked in seven years and feels she had no choice in continuing her career because she didn't want to put her children in childcare.
“Raising a child is something that is very valuable, meaningful and very good from a personal point of view, but sometimes it seems that it is not valued in society,” Lee said.
Prof. Dr. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej and African First Ladies of Botswana, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, The Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Sierra Leone, Angola and Central Africa Inaugurate 9th Edition of Merck Foundation (www.Merck-Foundation.com) Africa Asia Luminary 2022; African First Ladies marked together the 5th Anniversary of Merck Foundation and 10 year journey of their development programs by sharing the impact of their partnership programs with Merck Foundation to build healthcare capacity, support girl education and break infertility stigma; More than 10,000 participants including healthcare providers, policymakers, researchers, academia and media representatives from 70 English, French, Spanish and Portuguese speaking countries attended the hybrid Luminary - onsite and online to benefit from scientific and social sessions to address social issues and advance healthcare capacity in 32 critical and underserved medical specialties.
Merck Foundation reported the impact of providing 1470 scholarships to doctors from 50 countries in 32 critical and underserved specialties such as; Oncology, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Preventive, Endocrinology, Fertility, Embryology, Reproductive Care, Respiratory Care, Acute and Intensive Care, Neonatal Care, Pediatric Emergency, Advanced Surgery, Microbiology & Infectious Diseases, Internal Medicine, Ophthalmology, Psychiatry, Palliative Care and Pain Management and more; Link to the Facebook live steam of Inaugural Session of Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary & African First Ladies High Level Panel: http://bit.ly/3XE4EWpMerck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany, conducted their annual conference, the 9th Edition of “Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary” on 15th & 16th November 2022, as a hybrid conference (onsite and online).
The conference was inaugurated by Prof. Dr. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of both of Executive Board of E.Merck KG and Merck Foundation Board of Trustees, and Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation and Chairperson of Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary, along with African First Ladies of 13 Countries;H.E. Mrs. NEO JANE MASISI, The First Lady of the Republic of Botswana H.E. Madam ANGELINE NDAYISHIMIYE, The First Lady of the Republic of Burundi H.E. Madam DENISE NYAKERU TSHISEKEDI, The First Lady of the Democratic Republic of The Congo H.E. Mrs. FATOUMATTA BAH-BARROW, The First Lady of the Republic of The Gambia H.E. Mrs. REBECCA AKUFO-ADDO, The First Lady of the Republic of Ghana H.E. Mrs. CLAR MARIE WEAH, The First Lady of the Republic of Liberia H.E. Mrs. MONICA CHAKWERA, The First Lady of the Republic of Malawi H.E. Mrs. ISAURA FERRÃO NYUSI, The First Lady of the Republic of Mozambique H.E. Mrs. MONICA GEINGOS, The First Lady of the Republic of Namibia H.E. Dr. FATIMA MAADA BIO, The First Lady of the Republic of Sierra Leone H.E. Mrs. MUTINTA HICHILEMA, The First Lady of the Republic of Zambia H.E. Dr. ANA DIAS LOURENÇO, The First Lady of the Republic of Angola H.E. Madam BRIGITTE TOUADERA, The First Lady of Central AfricaMerck Foundation CEO, Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej emphasized, “I am very proud to welcome my dear sisters, our Guests of Honor and Keynote Speakers, the First Ladies of 13 African Countries, who are also the Ambassadors of Merck Foundation “More Than a Mother”.
We are together celebrating the 5th Anniversary of Merck Foundation and 10th Anniversary of our programs since 2012 which aim to build healthcare & media capacity and raise awareness on a wide range of sensitive and critical social and health issues like Supporting Girl Education, Ending Child Marriage, Stopping GBV, Breaking Infertility Stigma, Ending FGM, Women Empowerment, and Diabetes Awareness.
“I am proud that Merck Foundation has provided till today, more than 1470 scholarships to young doctors from 50 countries in 32 critical and underserved specialties.
This is a great milestone of transforming patient care landscape and leading Africa to a better, healthier and stronger future.
I am happy to hear from my dear sisters their experiences and success stories in their respective countries, together we will be an important part of Africa’s legacy.” added Senator Kelej.
H.E. Mrs. NEO JANE MASISI, The First Lady of Botswana & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother said, ”Our partnership with Merck Foundation started in 2018 and since then, we have achieved very important milestones .
Together with Merck Foundation, we launched a Poster Contest on “Stop GBV” initiative to end Gender-Based Violence in Botswana and Merck Foundation provided 20 Sewing Machines to the women groups who suffer GBV across Botswana to be able to generate monthly income.
Moreover, more than 31 scholarships were provide for our local Doctors in Botswana in 32 different underserved and critical specialties such as: Diabetes, Endocrinology, Dermatology, Gastroenterology, Oncology, Respiratory Medicines, Acute Medicines and Sexual and Reproductive Medicines”.
H.E. Mrs. ANGELINE NDAYISHIMIYE, The First Lady of Burundi & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother stated, “I am very proud of the partnership we have with Merck Foundation.
Through our long-term partnership, 47 scholarships have been provided for our local doctors in critical and underserved specialities such as Diabetes, Oncology, Fertility & Embryology, Sexual & Reproductive care, I am very happy to share that we have succeeded to establish the first public IVF center in Burundi and Merck Foundation has provided training for the staff of Fertility Specialists, Embryologists and also technicians, who are the first local experts in my country, we are making history in Burundi.”H.E. Madam DENISE NYAKERU TSHISEKEDI, The First Lady of Democratic Republic of The Congo & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother said, “I would like to greatly acknowledge our valuable partnership with Merck Foundation that we started in 2020, and in a very short time, we have together achieved a lot.
I am Proud to share that Merck Foundation have provided 77 scholarships to our doctors in the fields of Oncology, Fertility, Embryology, and Diabetes, which gave us our first Fertility specialists & Embryologists.
Together, we also conducted the Online Health Media Training for our journalists to create a culture shift, to break the silence, and be the voice of the voiceless in order to raise awareness on sensitive social and health issues like Infertility Stigma, Supporting Girl Education, Women Empowerment, Ending Child Marriage, Ending FGM and Stopping GBV, Diabetes early detection and prevention”.
H.E. Mrs. FATOUMATTA BAH-BARROW, The First Lady of Republic of The Gambia & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother emphasized, “Our partnership journey is going from strength to strength as we have achieved many important and significant milestones since 2017, when I hosted Merck Foundation CEO and together, we launched the programs in my country.
Through the partnership with Merck Foundation, 32 scholarships have been provided to young Gambian doctors in medical specialties.
And, we are making history by providing training to first specialists in many fields such as Oncology, Respiratory, Fertility, Embryology, Reproductive Care, Diabetes, neonatal care, Endocrinology and more.
It is history in the making.”H.E. Mrs. REBECCA AKUFO-ADDO, The First Lady of Ghana & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother emphasized, “I have been working closely with Merck Foundation to empower women in general and infertile women in specific, not only through creating a culture shift but by also making the fertility, sexual and reproductive care available for them and their husbands whenever they need it, nationwide.
We have been able to provide more than 110 scholarships of 32 specialty training in the fields of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiology, Endocrinology, Respiratory, Acute Medicine, Sexual and Reproductive medicine, Embryology, Respiratory, Critical care, Psychiatry, General Surgery, Dermatology, Emergency and Resuscitation Medicine, Gastroenterology, Neuroimaging for Research, Pain Management, Rheumatology, and Neonatal Medicine.
All these fields are very critical to our country which I consider a great milestone to transform patient care landscape in my country”.
H.E. Mrs. CLAR MARIE WEAH, The First Lady of Liberia & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother said, “I am very happy to work closely with Merck Foundation to empower infertile women through access to information, education, health and change of mindset.
Merck Foundation also provided Sanitary Napkin Production Machine and raw materials, this will really help our young girls.
I truly appreciate our partnership and acknowledge their smart and serious strategy to provide specialty training for our local doctors.
Till today, 37 scholarships have been provided to our doctors in many critical and underserved specialties.
This is a huge achievement for us, and we are definitely making history in Libera by training the first specialists in many medical fields such as: Infertility, Embryology, Oncology and Diabetes”.
H.E. Mrs. MONICA CHAKWERA, The First Lady of Malawi & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother expressed, “I have worked closely with Merck Foundation since 2020 to define the right strategy to build healthcare capacity, empower infertile women, and support girl education in Malawi.
With the support of Merck Foundation and their “Empowering Berna” program , 13 women have transformed their lives as they got a chance to establish their own small businesses so that they can be financially independent; and under the ‘Educating Linda’ program, we provided scholarships of 60 Malwian school girls to continue thier education till they graduate.
Moreover, 33 scholarships have been provided to young Malawian doctors in 32 critical medical specialties such as Fertility & Embryology, Diabetes, Endocrinology, Oncology, Internal Medicine, Sexual & Reproductive Medicines, Ousmane emergency, respiratory care, acute care and more.
My journey with Merck Foundation has definitely been amazing, very impactful and efficient”.
H.E. Mrs. ISAURA FERRÃO NYUSI, The First Lady of Mozambique & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother emphasized, “I am very impressed with initiatives of Merck Foundation under the "More Than a Mother" Campaign.
We recently conducted our First Online Health Media Training for our journalists to emphasize on the important role that media plays to influence our society to raise awareness on a wide range of social and health issues.
The training session benefitted many of our journalists.
Together with Merck Foundation, I am fully committed to working closely to introduce more such innovative ideas that engage different sectors to create a culture shift.
Moreover, 14 scholarships have been provided to our doctors for the Online Diabetes Master course, a unique course specially developes in Portuguese language so that our local doctors can benefit from it, under Merck Foundation’s Nationwide Diabetes Blue Points Program”.
H.E. Mrs. MONICA GEINGOS, The First Lady of Namibia & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother said “I am glad to have this ongoing long-term beneficial partnership with Merck Foundation.
I am particularly excited as Merck More Than a Mother Ambassador, as together we have been doing amazing work in the country to empower women living with infertility through access to information, education, information, change of mindset and economic empowerement.
Moreover, 53 scholarships have been provided to young Namibian doctors in the fields of Diabetes, Cardiology, Endocrinology, Respiratory Medicines, Acute Medicines and Sexual and Reproductive Medicines, and many more.
For Namibia, 2.4M population, we will soon have more than 18 skilled and trained doctors nationwide to assist couples living with infertility or need any sexual & reproductive help, this will be a significant contribution towards improving women health in general and reproductive health in specific”.
H.E. Dr. FATIMA MAADA BIO, The First Lady of the Republic of Sierra Leone stated, “Our partnership with Merck Foundation is since 2018 and we highly appreciate their programs.
Together, we have provided 46 scholarships to our doctors from different provinces of Sierra Leone in the fields of Oncology, Embryology & Fertility, Sexual and Reproductive Health Medicine, Diabetes, Endocrinology, Orthopaedics, Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases, Clinical Psychiatry, Dermatology, Gastroenterology, Internal Medicine, Neonatal Medicine, Paediatric Emergency Medicine, Cardiovascular Medicine, Respiratory Medicine and Emergency and Resuscitation Medicine.
I can proudly say that along with Merck Foundation we are making history in Sierra Leone by providing training for the First Oncologists in the country with the aim to establish the first skilled cancer care team who will be working in our new hospital, this will improve access to quality and equitable cancer care in the country.
This is a huge achievement for us since we did not have any oncologists or fertility specialists and we have in general a very limited number of local specialists in the public sector before starting our partnership with Merck Foundation.”H.E. Mrs. MUTINTA HICHILEMA, The First Lady of the Republic of Zambia expressed, “I am very proud of our partnership with Merck Foundation.
I am very impressed with ‘Educating Linda’ program to support girl education and provide scholarships to girls to complete thier education by providing thier tutiton fees, we have implememted this program in Zambia and provided 22 girls with scholarships to cover thier tuttion fees of nursing schools and health sciences univesities .this scholarship wil continue till they complete thier education successfully.
I also very interested in "More Than a Mother" Campaign, this campaign is very critical for my country and Africa, at large.
I am fully supporting this initiative as the First Lady of Zambia and as an african woman, it is very close to my heart.
Moreover, together with Merck Foundation, we have provided 50 scholarships to our doctors from different provinces across Zambia and we will scale up this program under the leadership of my office”.
During her speech, H.E. Mrs. ANA DIAS LOURENÇO, The First Lady of the Republic of Angola & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother stated, “I am looking forward to start the implementation of the ‘Educating Linda’ Program which aims to empower girls through education and end child marriage, this program is very close to my heart as I consider it one of my main objectives as the First Lady of Angola; and as an African woman, I strongly believe that girl Education is one of the most critical areas of women empowerment.
Moreover, I am very excited about the 8 important different competitions for our communities which are: Best Media, Song, Film and Fashion awards with the aim to encourage Media, Musicians, Fashion Designers, Filmmakers, students, and new potential talents in these fields to play their important role in sensitizing their communities about many critical social and health issues.”H.E. Madam BRIGITTE TOUADERA, The First Lady of Central Africa & Ambassador of Merck Foundation More Than A Mother emphasized “I greatly value our partnership with Merck Foundation that is since 2015, to support us to advance and build the healthcare capacity in our country by providing scholarships to our local doctors in various medical specialities.
Together, we worked on “Empowering Berna” program where we established small businesses for infertile and childless women and trained them to run their businesses so they can have income and become independent and have purpose life.
Also, as a part of Merck Foundation’s Education Linda program, we will be providing scholarships to 20 under-privileged schoolgirls from our country to support girl education.
Moreover, 5 scholarships have been provided to our doctors by Merck Foundation so far in Oncology and Diabetes”.
The 9th Edition of Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary 2022 was streamed live on the social media handles of Merck Foundation (http://bit.ly/32YFKpv) and Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej (http://bit.ly/3ATPaEd).
Link to the Facebook live steam of Inaugural Session of Merck Foundation Africa Asia Luminary & African First Ladies High Level Panel: (https://bit.ly/3XE4EWp)Merck Foundation is transforming the Patient care landscape and making history together with its partners in Africa, Asia, and beyond, through:• 1470 + Scholarships provided by Merck Foundation for doctors from 50 Countries in 32 critical and underserved medical specialties.
Merck Foundation is also creating a culture shift and breaking the silence about a wide range of social and health issues in Africa and underserved communities through:• 2200 + Media Persons from more than 50 countries trained to better raise Awareness about different social and health issues• 8 Different Awards Launched annually for best media coverage, fashion designers, films, and songs• Around 30 songs to address health and social issues by local singers across Africa• 8 Children’s Storybooks in three languages - English, French, and Portuguese• Pan African TV Program "Our Africa by Merck Foundation” TV Program addressing Social and Health Issues in Africa through “Fashion and ART with Purpose” Community• 1000+ Girls from 15 African countries supported through scholarships or school items, annually.
• 9 Social Media Channels with more than 5 Million Followers
Adamawa Government says it has recorded no fewer than 197 cases of cholera, with two deaths across the six affected local government areas of the state.
Director of Public Health, Ministry of Health, Dr Celine Laori, made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday in Yola. She identified the affected local government areas as: Shelleng, Guyuk, Yola North, Yola South, Numan and Girei, saying that the two deaths were recorded in Guyuk and Shelleng.
Laori said that the government had intervened and provided relevant drugs and other preventive and curative measures against the disease in the affected communities.
The director, however, stated that the ministry had administered treatment on many of the victims.
According to her, the victims have been receiving antibiotics, intravenous fluids (IVF) and oral rehydration therapy (ORT) for effective treatment and cure against the scourge.
“We have deployed experts in those communities for wider coverage,” she said.
Laori cautioned residents of the affected communities against open defecation as well as eating and drinking of contaminated food and water.
She advised residents in the state to intensify basic hygiene, hand washing and clean environment.
The director said that World Health Organisation (WHO) had recently donated anti-cholera drugs worth millions of naira, as part of its efforts to support the ongoing cholera response activities in the state.
Similarly, she said that the state had recorded 16 established cases of monkey pox in 12 local government areas, although with no loss of life.
According to her, some of the affected local government areas are: Girei, Michika, Mayo Belwa, Tongo, Yola North and Yola South.
Laori stated that the ministry had since embarked on aggressive house-to-house sensitisation against the disease.
“We are presently dealing with the 102 suspected cases of the disease, out of which only two were established,” she said.
She lauded the efforts of the state government for taking proactive measures against such eventualities through supply of drugs, provision of logistics and other relevant initiatives in promoting health issues.
The director stated that the Gov. Ahmadu Fintiri-led administration had recently established four additional cottage hospitals in Lamurde, Shelleng and two other local government areas with a view to increasing access to health care delivery.
Laori said that government had been forthcoming in organising capacity building, training and retraining of health personnel, to boost their performances.
“Hundreds of nurses, medical doctors and pharmacists were recently recruited and deployed in existing facilities across urban and rural communities,” she stated.
Origene Fertility, a fertility clinic, has reiterated its commitment to supporting couples on the journey to parenthood, while encouraging them to remain unfazed in their desire to have children.
Co-founder, Origene Fertility, Mrs Oludayo Yusuf stated this in an event on Friday in Lagos.
The event which had as its theme: “Parenthood; From your Heart to Your Arms,” had both morning and afternoon sessions, and discussions centered on the myths about infertility and the facts.
Yusuf said that Origene Fertility offers world-class solutions in fertility treatments with the help of advanced tools and the experience of pioneer gynecologists’ team.
“Parenthood is a journey and there are various ways to arrive at the destination.
While the journey can seem lonely, it doesn’t have to be.
“At Origene, It is our vision to support every couple going through the journey of infertility to parenthood.
“We are here for every step of the journey.
We will support you all the way,” she said.
Yusuf, who is also a Senior Embryologist asked what was more important to couples, is it to have a child or what people will say?
She said : “Don’t let what people will say hinder you from the joy that comes from being a parent.
“Remember, everyone needs a little help sometimes.
So don’t be discouraged if you require options such as sperm or egg donation and surrogacy.
” According to her, the journey to parenthood is not a one-size-fits-all as some journey through gamete donation, embryo donation, IVF, surrogacy and adoption.
Yusuf noted that the aim was to become a parent in a safe, comfortable, and legal way, adding that, one must decide to take the first step.
On his part, the Medical Director, and co-founder, Dr Babatunde Ogunkinle spoke on the landmark of reproductive science, stating that over eight million babies have been born through In Vitro fertilisation (IVF).
“With over 356 treatment cycles, and over 180 babies, Origene Fertility provides top-notch services such as ovulation induction, sperm retrieval, embryo cryopreservation and IUI treatment” he said.
A Customary Court in Nyanya, Abuja, on Friday dissolved a 10-year-old marriage between Blossom Ameh and her husband Simon over childlessness.
The judge, Doocivir Yawe, dissolved the marriage on the grounds that parties have lost interest in the union.
“It is on record that both parties have consented to the dissolution of the marriage and also the respondent has asked the court to grant his wife prayer of divorce.
“In view of this, the court has no other choice than to grant the petitioner’s prayer for divorce.
The marriage is hereby dissolved.
“The petitioner is also ordered to return the bride price of N50,000 to the respondent,” Doocivir said.
The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that Ameh dragged Simon to court, seeking dissolution of the marriage on grounds that she has lost interest in the marriage.
“I am exhausted in this marriage.
I have tried my best to have children but all attempts have failed.
“I underwent IVF twice and it failed.
I want to go back to my people,” she said.
New discoveries about embryonic blood stem cell creation by Australian researchers could one day eliminate the need for stem cell donors.
The discovery was made independently by both biomedical engineers and medical researchers of the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Sydney, as part of a move in regenerative medicine.
This was to move toward the use of “induced pluripotent stem cells’’ to treat disease.
“This means that instead of using live human or animal embryos, stem cells are reverse engineered from adult tissue cells.
’’ Two studies emerged by two independent groups of researchers from UNSW, which takes the medical community one step closer to achieving this.
One of the studies led by Jingjing Li and published in Cell Reports and revealed on Wednesday, details how a simulation of an embryo’s beating heart.
The embryo’s beating heart using a microfluidic device in the lab led to the development of human blood stem cell precursors.
This, as the name suggests, is stem cells on the verge of becoming blood stem cells.
“We made a device mimicking the heart beating and the blood circulation and an orbital shaking system which causes shear stress.
“Or friction, of the blood cells as they move through the device or around in a dish,’’ Li explained.
The device successfully replicated the process in which precursor blood stem cells differentiate into various blood components.
The other study was revealed in an article published in Nature Cell Biology, which saw John Pimanda and Vashe Chandrakanthan of UNSW Medicine and Health detail their research on how blood stem cells are created in embryos.
This was done by looking at the mechanism used naturally in mice to make blood stem cells from the cells that line blood vessels, known as endothelial cells.
While it was already known that this process took place, Pimanda explained that up until now the identity of the cells that regulate this process has been a mystery.
According to Chandrakanthan, knowing the identity of these cells provides medical researchers with important clues as to how endothelial cells could be triggered to produce blood stem cells.
Both groups of researchers claimed that this is an important step toward solving many challenges limiting regenerative medical treatments today.
Such as donor shortages, rejection of donor tissue cells and ethical issues associated with using IVF embryos.
The Practice Manager of One Wellness Centre, Dr Chibuki Aigbe, says the fertility outfit is poised to increase the success rate of vitro fertilization (IVF) in the country.
Aigbe made this known at a breakfast session organised by the centre with its fertility specialists and unveiling of its facility in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that IVF is a complex series of procedures used to help fertility or prevent genetic problems and assist with the conception of a child The manager said the centre offered services to patients in gynecology and assisted reproductive technology.
She said:“When we did our feasibility study, we realised that there were less than 30 IVF centre.
“We also find out that it’s just about one that have the lastest technology as at when this study was carries out so we decided to go into this and raised the bar.
“We realised that the success rate was between 30 and 60 per cent.
“I can say that with the capacity we have and investment we have done, we can raise the success percentage to 60″.
Aigbe added that the establishment of the centre was initiated to reduce medical tourism to Nigerians who are in need of quality fertility treatment.
“A lot of people have the habit of visiting other countries for healthcare services.
“Our specialists and embryologists are trained, certified, and experienced globally.
“So, we decided to come up with something that is of global health standard and also at a very reasonable price for patients,” she said.
Expert canvasses health insurance coverage for fertility treatments Expert canvasses health insurance coverage for ferDr Okechukwu Kalu, a Consultant Pediatrician and Gynecologist, on Monday called for health insurance coverage for the treatment of fertility issues in the country.
Kalu ,also Proprietor, Life Point Fertility Centre, Aba, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Aba on Monday.
According to him, fertility treatments are expensive and should have some level of health insurance coverage, as done in some countries, to ensure that poor couples could access treatments.
Kalu said that the support would increase the psychological wellbeing of childless couples and also help the country’s population.
He said the number of infertility cases was on the increase in Nigeria, hence action should be taken to address the problem.
“One out of every 10 married persons, will require some form of help and of that accruing number in the population, about one to two percent might not get help through the conventional method of conception.
“So they need In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF), which is the process of aiding human fertilisation outside the body,using a scientific method.
“People that require In Vitro -Fertilisation or IVF are so many, but the number of doctors in practice in this area are not enough.
“More hands are needed and you know it is a process,and to get the qualifications to practise takes a lot of time, money and energy,”he said.
Kalu added that brain drain was a big problem affecting every aspect of medical practice in Nigeria because the best of the bests were leaving.
” Unfortunately the government does not appear to understand how serious the situation is.
“The situation is so serious and dire that very soon, if nothing is done to reverse this trend, you will have pharmacists taking care of many sicknesses and taking the place of doctors”, he said.
Kalu, however,said the situation could be improved by government encouraging packages and facilities in the health sector to keep doctors back home .
According to him, some doctors who do fertility and reproductive health treatments are not qualified to be certified by the Association for Fertility and Reproductive Health of Nigeria (AFRH).
Kalu,however ,said that the AFRH, led by Dr Ibrahim Wada, was working to check quackery in the sector with its regulatory bill that had passed second reading at the National Assembly IEI
The Merck Foundation (https://Merck-Foundation.com/) offers 400 grants for specialized training in fertility, embryology, and sexual and reproductive medicine to develop local embryologists and fertility experts for 38 countries in Africa and Asia; The Merck Foundation makes history by training the first African embryologists and fertility experts in many countries such as; Gambia, Burundi, Guinea, Chad, Niger, Sierra Leone, Malawi and Liberia.
In addition, it supported the training of staff of the first public IVF centers in Rwanda, Burundi, Ethiopia, Niger, Bangladesh and Myanmar.
The Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany, celebrates 'World ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology) Day 2022' together with African First Ladies through its "More Than a Mother" campaign by building and promoting the capacity of fertility care in Africa and Asia. Senator, Dr. Rasha Kelej, Executive Director of the Merck Foundation, Most Influential African (2019, 2020 & 2021) emphasized: "Happy World ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology) Day 2022.
I strongly believe in the critical role of embryologists and fertility specialists to empower infertile women through improving their access to information, changing mindsets and equitable quality fertility care in Africa and Asia I am so proud that as part of the campaign ' More than a mother from the Merck Foundation' in association with the African First Ladies, who are also the Ambassadors of the “More than a Mother” Campaign of the Merck Foundation, Ministries of Health, Academia and Fertility Societies, we awarded more than 400 scholarships to young doctors from 38 countries to be the local fertility experts in their respective countries to be the first local fertility experts in their countries where they have never had a single one before local embryologist or fertility specialist, such as Gambia, Burundi, Guinea, Chad, Niger, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Malawi and more.
Together with Merck Foundation alumni and our partners, we are making history and reshaping the landscape of fertility care in Africa and beyond."
Merck Foundation 'More Than a Mother' is a strong movement that aims to empower women living with infertility through access to information, education, mindset change and economic empowerment.
This powerful campaign supports the definition of policies and interventions to build equitable quality fertility and reproductive care capacity, break the stigma of infertility, and raise awareness of infertility prevention and male infertility.
“Of the total of 400, more than 180 scholarships have been awarded for clinical and practical training for fertility specialists and embryologists, and more than 215 scholarships have been awarded for a one-year diploma and two-year master's degree in sexual and reproductive medicine.
and biotechnology of Assisted Human Reproduction and Embryology”, explained Dr. Rasha Kelej.
In addition, the Merck Foundation has trained more than 2,200 media representatives from more than 30 countries to raise community awareness and break the stigma around infertility and infertile and childless women.
The Merck Foundation has also been empowering childless and infertile women through its "Empowering Bern" initiative under its "More Than a Mother" movement.
This initiative helps women who can no longer be treated for infertility by helping them train to set up small businesses so they can become independent and rebuild their lives.
Through 'Empowering Bern', the lives of many infertile women have been transformed in many African countries such as Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, Central African Republic, Niger, Malawi and many more.
The Merck Foundation, in collaboration with African First Ladies, has also launched David's Story, a children's storybook that emphasizes strong family values of love and respect from an early age and will reflect on removing the stigma of infertility and violence.
resulting domestic in the future.
Storybooks have been localized for each country to better connect with young readers.
Read David's story here: (https://bit.ly/3POAmM2) The Merck Foundation has also released over 25 songs, many of these songs have been created with the aim of breaking the stigma of infertility, as part of its campaign "More than a Mother" campaign.
Listen to some of the songs here: watch, share and subscribe to the 'Plus qu'une MERE' composed and sung by Mrs. Lucky-Lou, the daughter of the president and the first lady of Burundi: (https://bit .ly/3oB2kPU) Watch, share and subscribe to the song “More Than a Mother” by Cwesi Oteng and Adina from Ghana: (https://bit.ly/3cL6r9l) Watch, share and subscribe to the song “More Than a Mother song by HE George Weah, the President of the Republic of Liberia created to support the Merck Foundation's "More Than a Mother" movement: (https://bit.ly/3vi573W) Listen all songs from "Más que una madre" here: (https://bit.ly/3PUxM7a) “To address this important issue of breaking down the stigma of infertility and also a wide range of other social issues, we launch the Merck Foundation's 'More Than a Mother' Awards annually in partnership with African First Ladies.
I would also like to invite the African Media, Fashion, Film and Musician Community, students and potential talents in these fields to apply for the awards this year, to create cultural change and break the silence on one or more of the following topics: End the stigma of infertility, Support girls' education, Empower women, End child marriage, End female genital mutilation and/or End gender-based violence at all levels.
I look forward to receiving your creative work at firstname.lastname@example.org,” concluded Senator Dr. Rasha Kelej.
A fertility herbal expert, Dr Ekinyi Ochete, says infertility is a global public health problem that deserves utmost attention to solve.
Ochete said this to newsmen on Saturday in Abuja, on the sidelines of 2022 World Infertility Awareness Month.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that World Infertility Awareness Month is celebrated every June, to increase awareness regarding numerous infertility issues faced by couples across the globe.
This includes problems related to females as well as male fertility.
During awareness, myths about infertility are debunked and a lot of options are brought forward to those who may want to conceive.
Ochete advised Nigerians to embrace alternative medicines and treatments to solve problems of infertility.
“Yes, some causes of infertility can be overcome. All you need is a good doctor, a supportive family, and an open mind.
“There is some evidence of benefit from acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine and naturopathy in improving fertility outcomes for women with specific clinical infertility diagnoses.
“Acupuncture, yoga and art therapy may reduce infertility-related distress,” she said.
She said that infertility was a term used for couples who could not conceive as well as women who were unable to stay pregnant and often suffered miscarriage.
“Infertility can be tough on those experiencing it in Nigeria, a solution cannot be provided until awareness regarding the cause is created.
“Infertility is so common that the World Health Organisation (WHO) has recognised it as a public health issue for couples across the world,” she said.
Commenting on some of the common problems that caused infertility in women, the expert cited “polycystic ovary syndrome”, found in a high percentage of women.
“The syndrome has several stages and is often curable through medication and treatment.
“Other issues faced by women include a diminished ovarian reserve, where the eggs in a woman reduce with each menstrual cycle.
“There is also endometriosis, a condition where the growth of the tissue inside the uterus is moved outside.
“It is due to these problems that you have a lot of women undergoing IVF treatments every year.
“Since fertility issues are not a rarity, it is recommended for women in Nigeria to embrace indigenous and original approaches in treatment,” she said.
She said infertility was now largely due to lifestyle and choices, especially unhealthy food, excessive consumption of alcohol, and lack of rest, among others.
Ochete enjoined the government to set up a regulatory body to standardise herbal products and ensure adherence to quality for Nigerian men and women to benefit.
She said that the treatment of infertility in males and females was varying in their associated risks, intensity, and invasiveness, dependent on the duration, cause, age and personal preferences.
“The physical, financial, and time commitment are the required factors for infertility treatment.
“The treatments can range from medication therapy to induce ovulation, to invasive manipulation of eggs and sperm outside of the body,” she said.
She, however, added that infertility awareness was a critical part of normalising conversation about fertility problems, adding that it was the first step in erasing stigma.