It was all excitement at the Lagos State owned healthcare facilities on the mainland and Island at the weekend, when the First Lady, Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, made surprise appearances at five hospitals to assess the progress of the ongoing Healthy Bee project; a free medical intervention programme aimed at combating organ impairment and life-threatening ailments in children co-sponsored by the Lagos State Government.
Organised in collaboration with Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, Kadiri Obafemi Hamzat (BOSKOH) Healthcare Mission International, a non-governmental organisation (NGO), which provided the personnel and technical service support for the project, it has impacted so many and brought smiles to the faces of many families.
The medical initiative is a component of the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration’s development agenda to reposition healthcare and give disadvantaged children access to quality medical care.
The First Lady’s visit excited the beneficiaries especially children who went through free medical procedures that will fast track their healing from various conditions.
At 10am, Dr. Sanwo-Olu breezed into Massey Street Children Hospital on the Lagos Island, where she observed medical procedures being administered on infant patients suffering dental disorder.
The First Lady moved to Lagos Island General Hospital in Marina, where she visited children operated for different degrees of hernia.
Dr. Sanwo-Olu was also at Onikan Health Centre, Gbagada General Hospital and Orile Agege Health Centre for the purpose.
Speaking after the tour of the hospitals, the First Lady in a statement issued by Mr Tobuson Ogunbanwo, Director, Public Affairs, Ministry of Health, said she was delighted to know thousands of residents had benefited since the project started.
She expressed optimism that the effort would lead to improvement in healthcare delivery in the State, assuring that the present administration would spare no effort to give deserved attention to health sector, with the view to scaling up healthcare services to the people.
She said: “I see hope for improvement in the health sector after my visit to five hospitals today to observe what has been done in the past few weeks.
“I started with Massey Street Children’s Hospital. I was impressed with the children that I saw there and the Dental Surgeries that have been done, with some still being attended to. The turnout was impressive and the people appreciated what we have done. All the surgeries were being done free of charge.
“I also attended the General Hospital Lagos to see the children that had Orthopedic surgeries and the mothers were also very grateful for what has happened there, as well as Onikan Health Centre. I was also at General Hospital in Gbagada, and finally General Hospital Orile-Agege.”
Dr Sanwo-Olu who gave kudos to the management of BOSKOH Lagos Healthcare International (HMI) for the humanitarian service noted that she is impressed by interventions that were carried out so far.
She noted that she is aware that the medical team even worked during the last public holiday to ensure success of the programme.
The First Lady
appreciated all the volunteers working to ensure the success of the free health mission, assuring that the project would not be a one-off exercise.
She said: “I am here now in Orile-Agege and I can see the smiles on the faces of the people. I must say I am impressed that even during public holidays, our medical personnel as well as the rest of the management team worked together to ensure that this was a successful programme and that shows that we can do it; this shows that there is hope for Lagos; and there is hope for our citizens.”
Giving a breakdown of the exercise, Executive Director of BOSKOH Healthcare Mission International, Mrs Nike Osa said over 1000 people have so far benefited from various free surgical intervention including orthopedic surgery, eye surgery, dental procedure, ENT surgery amongst others.
“At Massey Street Children’s Hospital, 81 pediatric patients were referred for various cases, including dental problems and chronic medical conditions, with 67 dental extractions carried out, while over 300 patients are being attended to at General Hospital, Lagos, with a total of 94 surgeries so far carried out” Osa said.
At Onikan Health Centre, Osa said a total of 193 patients were registered, out of which 75 surgeries have so far been carried out, with many still ongoing and some slated for surgeries, all free of charge.
At the General Hospitals, Gbagada and Orile Agege respectively, Osa said about 120 pediatric surgeries had been done, while 88 eye surgeries were successfully carried out for adults ranging from ages 41 and 90 just within five days.
Noting that the surgical intervention is an offshoot of the free screening earlier conducted in designated primary health centres across the State, she explained that other medical conditions recorded during the screening exercise ranging from cardiac or heart problems, neurological and developmental conditions will be inculcated to specialists clinics of designated state-owned hospital for long term follow up.
“As we speak surgeries are going on in all our centres including Badagry and General hospitals and we appreciate everyone that has partnered with us and volunteered for this noble course without being paid”, She said.
She thank the Lagos State Government and the Governor of Lagos, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu for deeming it fit to partner with her organization to bring succor to people especially children who are the most vulnerable in the society.