By Chioma Obinna
In line with its Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR, Embassy Pharmaceutical and Chemicals Limited in partnership with Chief Ezenwa/Mrs Veronica Obi Foundation weekend organised free health mission for about 1,000 indigenes of Osumenyi community in Lagos.
The Free medical mission which included free cervical and breast cancer screening for 500 women, blood sugar and high blood pressure screening for men and women in the Amuwo Odofin area of Lagos was organised in memory of Late Chief Ezenwa/Mrs Veronica Obi as part of activities to keep their dreams alive.
In a chat with Good Health Weekly on the annual medical mission which started 17 years ago before the demise of the couple, Chief Executive Officer, Embassy Pharmaceutical and Chemicals Limited, Pharm. Nnamdi Obi said not less than 20,000 people have benefited so far from the annual medical mission.
According to him, the inclusion of breast and cervical cancer screening this year was borne out of the fact that many Nigerian women are currently ravaged by the disease.
” Every year about 10,000 women die from these diseases”
Explaining what informed the yearly free medical services, Obi who is the first son of Late Chief Ezenwa and Mrs Veronica said: “The Foundation recognized the need to give back to the society and the primary aim of the foundation is to save a lot of lives. Breast and cervical cancer are taking a toll on Nigerian women.”
“Today, we are screening between 450 and 500 women for breast and cervical cancers. Also, both men and women will be screened for blood sugar and blood pressure and there are free drugs to be given to them.
“For me in our healthcare facilities, women should be screened for breast and cervical cancers free of charge. If the federal government can treat women with VVF free, I cannot see the reason why cervical and breast cancer cannot be screened free of charge. Our parents lived the life of charity and we want to keep that alive. We have been doing this in our village for years. This is the second time we are doing it in Lagos. We distribute glasses free of charge. Since the establishment of the foundation, nothing less than 20,000 people have benefited from it. Our mission is to bring succour to the less privilege in the society. It is part of CSR by Embassy pharmaceuticals.
Speaking on the involvement of the Nigerian Medical Association, NMA at the event, Past NMA National Committee Chairman, on World Health organisation, WHO, activities, Dr Dimobi Owa said NMA is the umbrella body of everything health in Nigeria was delighted to be part of the programme to give back to the society.
Owa said such medical outreach would help to nip disease conditions in the bud as well as bring healthcare to the doorsteps of Nigerians. “It took two people to take syphilis around the world so if we have hundreds or thousands in different communities, most of the problems associated with preventive diseases will be sorted out.
On her part, Chairman, NMA National Committee on Protocol & Programs, Dr. Imei Okon said “If this outreach is replicated every part of Nigeria it will go a long way in solving some of the health issues ravaging Nigerians.
Okon, however, called on the Federal Government to use the opportunity of coronavirus crisis to put the country’s health system better shape as no Nigerian afflicted with the virus would be treated outside Nigeria but here in the country.
“No politician or office holders are going outside the country for treatment now if we use the opportunity presented by coronavirus crisis to put or health system in order that will be a plus for us.”