5,000 men, women and children received treatment during the 38th Free Medical Mission (FMM) of the O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation (OBLBF).
The medical mission featuring counselling/health education, outpatient consultations, general surgeries, paediatric care and dental care, was held at the Model Primary Healthcare Centre, Ikuru Town, Andoni Local Government Area of Rivers State from April 17 to 21, 2023.
Other services rendered during the mission were vision care (including glasses and surgery), malaria testing and treatment, HIV/AIDs screening, physiotherapy, and an onsite pharmacy and laboratory.
The Foundation’s medical team conducted 132 surgeries and distributed 780 eyeglasses to beneficiaries during the five-day mission.
The beneficiaries expressed gratitude to the Foundation for the timely life-saving interventions.
Mrs Gloria Joseph, who found out about the mission on Facebook and brought her nephew, who had earlier been diagnosed with appendicitis, was ecstatic about the free treatment and medicines he received.
“He had been in severe pain, and we didn’t know the cause. We finally took him to the hospital, where he was diagnosed with appendicitis and required surgery. Sadly, we couldn’t afford the procedure cost of N120,000. We brought him here, and he was operated upon and given medicines. He is progressing well, and I want to appreciate the Foundation’s generosity.
“I also thank the Chairman, Dr Seinye Lulu-Briggs, for her relentless effort in reaching the underserved. She is a true daughter of Rivers, and others should emulate her. Everything done here was efficient and neat. My nephew has no complications,” she said.
Another beneficiary, Mr Barry White, who hails from Akwa Ibom State, was diagnosed two years ago with a hernia but couldn’t pay for the surgery to remove it.
He said, “I was charged N280,000 for the procedure but couldn’t afford it. I had lived with the hernia until I heard about the Free Medical Mission. Doctors successfully operated on me here and didn’t collect any money. They also gave me prescription drugs free. I can’t express how relieved I am because this is a miracle. I pray to God to continue to sustain the Foundation, the Chairman and all her staff and volunteers.”
A fish vendor, Mrs Immaculate Isaiah, who had been living with a ruptured navel, also expressed gratitude for the free surgery to resolve the issue.
“I have been to three hospitals at Ngo and Bori, and all the doctors recommended a surgical operation to remove the rupture in my navel. Money was a challenge; the least the doctors asked to be paid was N350,000. I have little money, and nobody agreed to lend it to me.
“But O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation came and carried out the operation. What the doctors wanted to do at N350,000, O. B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation has done free of charge. They have changed my story, and my God will bless them richly. I want to thank Dr Seinye Lulu-Briggs, whose vision made these a reality. I won’t forget her for saving my life”, she said.
Commenting on the successful 38th Free Medical Mission, the Chairman of the O.B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation, Dr Seinye Lulu-Briggs, said she was happy that it delivered timely assistance to people who urgently needed care but could not afford it.
“That is what we are about at the O.B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation. Several Nigerians, especially those at the grassroots, are in urgent need of care but cannot afford it. Some don’t have the money to transport themselves to cities with general hospitals, so we take quality healthcare services to their doorsteps. We have been doing this since 2005 and will continue to do so because God has chosen us a vessel to assist those in need of care,” she said.
Dr Lulu-Briggs, who also cited the importance of good health to boosting individual and national productivity said more work needed to be done to provide quality healthcare for Nigerians.
She asked individuals and companies with the means to assist people in need of care or to partner with the Foundation.
She thanked those who partnered with the Foundation on the 38th Free Medical Mission, including the Rivers State Primary Healthcare Management Board, the executive council of Andoni LGA, the Okaan-Ama of Ikuru Town, King (Dr) Aaron Miller Ikuru and his chiefs.
She also appreciated the Foundation’s medical and non-medical volunteers for ensuring the mission’s success.
“I am very grateful for all their contributions in ensuring the mission’s success. We appreciate the hand of fellowship and ask those interested in our next outing to please contact us”, Dr Lulu-Briggs said.
The O.B. Lulu-Briggs Foundation began hosting Free Medical Missions in 2005 and has attended to over 144,500 people in Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River and Rivers State.