Succour For ONELGA Residents, As O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation Provides Free Medicare
…Treats Over 5000 Cases
…Says, Eye Diseases, Malaria Most Prevalent In Area
…As Eze Ogba Wants State Of Emergency Declared On Health
No less than 5000 inhabitants of Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government Area have benefitted from the free medical program of the O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation which held in Omoku, headquarters of ONELGA, March 21-25, 2022.
Chairman of the O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation, Dr. (Mrs.) Seinye Lulu Briggs while speaking to bring the program to a close on Friday, March 25, 2022, said a team of 49 medical and 22 non-medical volunteers attended to the massive crowd which, according to her, besieged the Model Primary Health Centre, Omoku on daily basis, adding that over 5,000 cases were successfully treated at the end of the exercise.
Dr. Mrs. Lulu Briggs disclosed that the services rendered include general medical services, surgeries, dental care, pediatric care, physiotherapy and optometric care, adding that a standard laboratory and a pharmacy were on hand at the sites.
Represented by the Head of Foundation, Oribi James Anaye Esq, the Chairman revealed that besides other minor health challenges, eye diseases and malaria was found to be most prevalent in Ogba/Egbema/ Ndoni Local Government Area (ONELGA) as a whole.
Noting that about 55% of the cases handled were eye related issues, she noted that the Mission effectively addressed eye concerns, issued glasses where necessary and offered correctional tips, adding that a team of Ophthalmologists also attended to surgery cases that concerned the eyes.
The Chairman however noted that the case of malaria was understandable as the ailment was generally prevalent in this part of Sub Saharan Africa.
Aside offering treatments for malaria and eye issues, the Omoku free medical programme which is the 35th in the series, also attended to other cases like Parkinson Disease, Prostrate Cancer, Diabetes, Kidney Disease and Nutrient Fibroids with surgeries carried out where necessary.
“We have also funded awareness campaigns on cervical and breast cancer as we do strongly believe that prevention is better than cure”, she said..
Dr. (Mrs.) Lulu-Briggs recalled that on the average, the Free Medical Missions usually saw and treat between 8,500 to 12,000 cases because, according to her, multiple cases were often received.
National Network reports that although the programme was basically meant to benefit the indigent residents of Omoku community, the Model Primary Health Center venue was stretched beyond capacity, as thousands thronged to the facility on daily basis.
While people came from the four Ogba districts of Egi, Igburu, Usomini
and Omoku/Obrikom, many others came all the way from Egbema and Ndoni, with yet a handful of others from neighboring Bayelsa and Delta States.
“This is the first time that a Local Government Area has welcomed us so warmly and taken the Mission as it’s own to the extent that we shared the same advertorials on so many media platforms”, she said.
She went on: “Our Free Medical Missions have been a major way through which the Foundation endures that quality healthcare is provided to our people right where they need it in their communities, free of any costs whatsoever’.
She explained that through the Missions, over 132,499 people have been reached inclusive of children, men and women feom Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Bayelsa States, stating that the Mission was coming to Omoku for the first time.
“Since 2005 when we hosted our first free medical mission working with our team of volunteer medical professionals, we have learnt a lot of lessons about the health challenges that our people face, and have perfected the means of running quality medical services efficiency with the support of non-medical volunteers.
“We hope that the people of Omoku and its environs have, during the course of this free medical mission, benefited immensely from the knowledge and expertise of the medical professionals that worked with us”, she said as she gave kudos to the medical team, led by Dr. Job Gogo.
“The O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation is committed to championing the course of the less privileged, the vulnerable, the aged and the needy.
“In line with this, we also implement a set of programmes – the elderly care, water and sanitation, education and entrepreneurship”, De. Mrs. Lulu-Briggs declared.
Some dignitaries present at the event include the Deputy Governor of Rivers State, Dr. (Mrs.) Ipalibo Harry Banigo ; Oba (Eze-Ogba) of Ogbaland, Oba Nwachukwu Nnam Obuohna Obi; members of the ONELGA Council of Chiefs; ONELGA Council Chairman, Hon Vincent Job; and his Vice/ Supervisor of Health, Dr. Stella Adaga.
Also present was representative of the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Sylvanus Ojum; members of ONELGA Legislative Assembly, ONELGA Executive Council and the Chairman of the Red Cross Society in ONELGA, Dr. Vincent Adiele.
In her speech, the state Deputy Governor applauded the O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation as a brand that has stood the test of time, adding that for 35 consecutive occasions, they had carried out Free Medical Missions and became the bridge to healthcare in the state, even extending to some neighboring states.
The Deputy Governor, who was represented by Dr. Agiriye M. Harry praised the foundation for consistency and professionalism, noting that for all the years they have been on the program, no reports of complications have been brought to government, and urged them to keep up the tempo.
She used the forum to call for reactivation of the ONELGA Health Authority for effective administration of primary healthcare at the grassroots, assuring Council Chairman, Hon. Vincent Job that a team of government officials would visit in May, 2022 to assist the council in that regard.
In his goodwill message, the Oba of Ogbaland, His Eminence, Nwachukwu Obuohna Obi said the kingdom lacked words to appreciate the O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation for their excellent humanitarian works, particularly to people of Ogbaland.
The Ogba monarch who was represented by the Traditional Prime Minister and Iyasira the13th, Eze Louis Ajie, lamented the health hazards ravaging ONELGA as the hub of oil and gas activities, urging the government to declare a state of emergency on health in the area.
Describing the Chairman of the Foundation, Dr. Mrs. Seinye O. B. Lulu-Briggs as ‘an angel in human form’, the Oba appealed to the multinational oil firms working in ONELGA to establish a specialist hospital in the area, stating that their operation was impacting negatively on the health of the people.