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Ogun Free Pediatric Medical Mission: Beneficiaries commend initiative, seek extension to help others


Michael Adesanya/Abeokuta

Following the five-day free pediatric medical mission conducted by a medical team from the Leicester (UK) Children’s Hospital and the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital in Sagamu, beneficiaries and residents of Ogun State have commended the organisers for the gesture.

They also called on the team behind the medical outreach to extend the duration of the free exercise in order to capture those unable to benefit from the last exercise.

Children with medical cases such as Hernia and Hydrocele, Undescended Testes, Hypospadias, Hirshsprung disease, Anorectal malformations and Lumps and swelling received free surgery during the medical mission.
Statistics released by the organisers revealed that 155 patients and over 300 procedures were performed in the five – day free paediatric surgery expedition, which was conducted with support from one other visiting Paediatric surgeon from University of Florida and also a number of medics from other hospitals within Nigeria.

Cityvoice learnt that over 4,000 applications were received when the registration and screening exercise started in July, with 700 plus shortlisted for medical attention. This number was picked due to lack of enough equipment and facility to attend to all those in need of the treatment.
During an on the spot assessment last week,  Cityvoice correspondent met many patients who were waiting on the queue at the Four suite Daniel O. Akintonde Operating theatre located at the premises of the teaching hospital.

Many of the parents said they slept at the health facility with their ailing kids while others got their early by 6am after receiving calls from organisers.
For all the beneficiaries and their families, the medical mission was a life saving gesture which they revealed will be in their hearts and minds forever.

Madam Abosede Kehinde, whose ward received medical attention for a lump at the neck, thanked the organisers for the initiative.
She said she discovered that her kid had the medical disorder over two years ago, revealing that the family was saving to go for operation before her uncle informed her about the free medical mission.

Mrs Kehinde said ” I really don’t know what to say sir. I am just happy. We were saving for the surgery when my uncle called me to tell me about the free surgery.
” I am just grateful to them for this, my kid is okay now. The surgery has been done and you can see her, she is doing fine “.

“My brother, people are still sitting down here o waiting for their turn. I just want to appeal to them ( organisers) to extend the time for the end of the operation. Let me just go and relax. I have been standing since morning. “

To Mrs Abdulganiu Opeyemi, it was indeed divine intervention for the free surgery to be organised.
Mrs Abdulganiu, whose son was diagnosed with hernia, said the family have raised close to N80,000 to carry out the surgery at Federal Medical centre, Idi-aba, Abeokuta.

“I am telling you, this is divine intervention and we are grateful to everyone that joined hands to organise this.  I am happy that my child is part of beneficiaries. We were planning for the surgery at FMC, we have contributed 80,000 plus already”, she stated.

” My advice to them is to please extend this surgery to others. Many people need help for their children,” she said.
Also speaking, Mrs Toyosi Adelaja said the Leicester (UK) Children’s Hospital and the state government must be commended for the initiative.

She said that the organisers have lifted a burden of many years, revealing that her son Toheeb, had been down for years due to the ailment.
Mrs Adelaja said she was happy and prayed for success for the organisers in all their dealings.

” Today, I am just happy because burden has been lifted. This is good, it is a good help for the people who cannot afford the medical bill if the surgery is done elsewhere”.

At the end of the surgery, each patient is given drugs and given dates to check back for examination. 

One of the organisers of the programme explained that the objective was to ensure provision of enough facilities to turn the OAUTH into a Regional Center of Excellence for Pediatric Surgery.
“This will ensure standardisation of the facility to world class,” Mr Sina Oduko said. “Patients can then be refered there from all over the UK and the other parts of Nigeria. Meanwhile, stakeholders are working on making the event an annual event.”