By Nwabueze Okonkwo
ONITSHA – About 7,000 patients from 14 communities in Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra State have received free medical treatment from a team of medical experts from the Clem-Fid Health Foundation.
The foundation which visited the communities, one after the other, for the health advocacy project tagged: Aguata Free Medical Tour 2018, saw an average of 500 patients treated for various ailments free of charge.
The project is part of the annual programne founded by Johnbosco Onunkwo Foundation, JOF, a Port Harcourt-based oil mogul and prominent indigene of Umuchu.
Umuchu is one of the 14 benefiting communities in the area. “No fewer than 3,500 patients from seven communities, including Amesi, Mkpologwu, Isuofia, Umuona, Ezinifite, Umuchu and Achina were treated by the medical team. Others communities that benefited were Ekwulobia, Uga, Igboukwu, Oraeri, Ikenga, Agulezechukwu and Akpo.
The Health Project Coordinator and President of Clem-Fid Health Foundation, Dr. Ejike Ibeanusi, who spoke in an interview with South-East Voice during one of their free medical tours at Achina community, said they treated an average of 500 patients for various ailments in each of the communities visited after conducting some tests. Ibeanusi also said that 10 of the patients had eye problems and had already been booked for free cataract surgery. Health education was provided, especially on diabetes mellitus, hypertension and various types of cancers.“
According to Ibeanusi, the team also donated kits like digital sphygmomanometer for checking blood pressure and glucometers for measuring blood sugar, apart from eye glasses, which were supplied after laboratory and eye tests.
“The project aims at empowering the local communities to take charge of their own health by encouraging regular medical check ups, especially for blood pressure and blood sugar among others.“
Ibeanusi stressed that the health project commenced on March 31, 2018 with a health walk tagged: Aguata Walk for Health, in a bid to sensitise the people of the area on the positive effect of exercise in curbing the adverse effects of hypertension and diabetes before visiting the communities for the free medical treatment. He further said that the free health programme started in 2016 when they covered only Umuchu, Onunkwo’s home town, who sponsored it, adding that in 2017, they covered the six towns in Aguata North before deciding to cover all the 14 communities in Aguata, this year.
“We are gradually working towards covering the entire 21 local government areas of the state next year,” Ibeanusi added, even as he described Obinna Onunkwo, the founder, as a philanthropist who enjoyed providing free services to the people.
He said the foundation which is a youth-based NGO, is geared towards harnessing and rekindling the potentials of the Nigerian youth and making life better for the elderly, stressing that apart from the free health care services, the foundation was also into skills acquisition and empowerment and scholarship programmes among others.
“In their separate comments, the President-General of Achina Town Union, Chito Ezeani and another prominent indigene of the town, Chief Modestus Umenzekwe, said the benefits of the free medical outreach were enormous and urged the people to avail themselves of the opportunity provided for them by JOF to check their health status.