Lagos State governor’s wife Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu on Tuesday launched a free surgical intervention programme for residents as part of activities to commemorate the 100 days in office of the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration.
The free health mission, which is being organised by the government, in partnership with a non-governmental organisation (NGO), Benjamin Olowojebutu Foundation, features free surgeries for residents suffering from lipoma, hernia, fibroid and breast lumps, as well as free dental and general health screening.
Speaking at the ceremony held at the General Hospital, Ijede, Ikorodu, Mrs. Sanwo-Olu said the development further signposts the commitment of the present administration towards revamping, rejuvenating and repositioning the health sector for quality service delivery to the people.
She said the development was instructive, considering that a considerable level of commitment to revamp the health sector had been demonstrated since May 29.
The second pillar of the developmental agenda for a greater Lagos promised by this administration, as espoused in T.H.E.M.E.S., speaks of provision of affordable, qualitative and accessible health care, as well as implementation of initiatives to rev up health care delivery and ensure healthy, livable and sustainable environment.
In furtherance of this, the 110-bed Maternal and Child Centre (MCC) in Eti-Osa was completed and inaugurated; while work is nearing completion on two others in Badagry and Epe, with more to follow.
“Also, the government launched Free Medical Mission for 21,000 children and adults in partnership with the Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu/Kadri Obafemi Hamzat (BOSKOH) Lagos Health Care Mission International, as part of efforts t play up the health of residents, especially children.
“Through this, over 21, 000 people were screened at seven centres for six days, while 1417 free surgeries were conducted for residents. These include paediatric eye surgery, adult eye surgery, paediatric surgery, dental surgery, orthopaedic surgery and ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) surgery,” Dr. Sanwo-Olu said.
She said in view of available statistics, which revealed that about 50 per cent of the female population aged 15 to 44 lived with fibroids; any medical intervention to address it and other diseases was most commendable.
The governor’s wife hailed the Benjamin Olowojebutu Foundation (BOF) for coming up with the initiative to partner the government, urging other organisations to emulate such laudable gesture to improve the health indices of the state.
“As a government, our goal is to ensure Universal Health Coverage as much as possible, and as well improve the quality of health care delivery to our people. With God on our side, the present administration shall not fail the people,” she said.
Permanent Secretary Ministry of Health Dr. Titilayo Goncalves said the free surgery was in furtherance of the premium placed on health care by the government, especially in reaching out to people at the grassroots, including the elderly, the very young and people living with disabilities.
“Our objective for Lagos, one of the largest mega cities in the world, is to institutionalise accessible, efficient and qualitative health care that is affordable to our residents irrespective of class or status, and we are here again today to demonstrate our commitment to these values,” she said.
The Executive Director of the foundation, Dr. Benjamin Olowojebutu, said since the initiative began, 1405 residents have been screened, adding that of the 150 planned surgeries, 51 life transforming surgeries have been performed, including five for fibroids, 33 for lipomas and 13 breast lumps.
One of the beneficiaries, Mr. Lola Lukman, said he was grateful to the government and the NGO for the initiative, noting that no money was collected from him for the lipoma surgery performed on him.