Lagos takes free medical services to Lekki residents
No fewer than 15,595 people residents in Lekki Local Council Development Area of Lagos and its environs have benefitted from free health consultation, screening and treatment for various ailments and diseases including hypertension, diabetes, eye and dental diseases from the just concluded free medical expedition held in the area between Wednesday 13th and Sunday 17th May, 2015, the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, has said.
Idris, according to a statement signed by the Assistant Director, Press and Public Relations, Tunbosun Ogunbanwo, while reviewing the report of the five days medical expedition stated that the Mission is a comprehensive health care initiative that covers primary, secondary and tertiary levels of prevention and was introduced in the quest to find ways to take health care to the grassroots and under-served areas of the state.
He opined that the Health Mission is particularly significant because it assists the government in its efforts at bringing, to the barest minimum, the number of untimely deaths in the State particularly as the beneficiaries of the programme include the most vulnerable members of the population at the grassroots like the elderly, children, youth and pregnant women who are prone to infections and other maternal and child health-related diseases.
Giving statistics on the just concluded mission, the Commissioner said a total of 1,595 people benefitted from eye screening and treatment including getting free eye glasses and medications adding that 547 people were treated for various dental ailment while 2,807 people had access to reproductive health services stressing also that 10,644 people were treated for other ailments like hypertension, diabetes, malaria amongst others.
Idris stated that the periodic organization of the medical missions is meant to compliment the normal health delivery services in the state with the objective of addressing the pressing health issues of the rural communities in the state in line with the state government’s free health policy and the health sector reform as part of an overall efforts geared towards tackling the challenges in the health sector.
The Commissioner added that the free medical missions were embarked upon to serve as alternative source of healthcare delivery access especially to the people at the grassroots since government cannot wait until infrastructure, equipment and manpower championed by the health reform are ready before people have access to qualitative and affordable healthcare service.
He noted that the Mission also compliment the state government’s formal health structures at the grassroots level as well as provide alternative avenues of providing secondary medical care to the ailing within the time frame of operation.
Idris said: “We combined virtually all our health programmes within this mission. We did eye screening, dental screening, hypertension and diabetes screening especially for the elderly; we also screened school children under the school health programme unit. Also, we have what we call the nutrition clinic where we screened children and elderly for malnutrition and those found malnourished are being taken care of.”
Idris noted also that public health education to enlighten the people on basic healthy living techniques was also done at the mission adding that a team of medical workers also do Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) screening and those found positive are referred to the appropriate centers for treatment.
Idris who described the mission as a stopgap measure to tackle the challenge of accessibility to healthcare services said the medical mission is one of the plans initiated by the government to bring healthcare delivery closer to the people at the grassroots.
While advising the residents of Lekki Local Council Development Area (LCDA) to heed to the advice given to them by the medical team, Idris called on all the people to maintain a high degree of personal and environmental hygiene.