by crossriverwatch admin
The National Association of Seadogs otherwise known as the Pyrates Confraternity on Tuesday disclosed that it spends about N20m annually to carry out its free medical mission across the country.
President of the association, Mr Ide Owodiong-Idemeko, stated this at Ikang, headquarters of Bakassi Local Government Area of Cross River State, during a recent free healthcare humanitarian service which attracted not less than 800 indigenes.
The free healthcare services were anti-natal, dental, eye defects, HIV/AIDS screening and counselling, blood sugar level checks, distribution of insecticide mosquito nets and free drugs to members of the community with peculiar problems.
At the end of the exercise, which was carried out in collaboration with Rural Africa Health Initiative, a non-governmental organisation, a pregnant woman whose name could not be ascertained gave birth to a baby boy, while 12 persons tested positive to HIV out of 150 screened.
Four persons were also discovered to be diabetic out of 93 checks and 59 reading glasses were given to those with sight defects.
The president of NAS, Mr Ide Owodiong-Idemeko, said that the free healthcare services were part of the association’s humanitarian service to the people.
He said similar services had also been carried out in Abuja, Ibadan, Lagos and other places where the organization held is quarterly PWC meetings.
“We are doing this project to help ameliorate the health challenges of those who cannot afford better healthcare services, due to financial problems.
“This healthcare services we are rendering today, costs the association N20m, we are happy because it is a humanitarian service to the people,” he said.
Speaking, Dr Kenneth Okoro, Head of Medical Services of NAS, said that the association carries out free medical services every year in remote areas that have no access to better healthcare service.
Okoro expressed satisfaction with the high turnout of residents in the community, adding that their medical mission was to help in ameliorating the health challenges of the people.
“We have identified that Malaria in Bakassi local government area is very prevalent due to the rivers around, and children are the most affected, and we will de-warm them accordingly. Malnutrition is also a challenge here, we are here with our full medical team to do our best,” he said.
According to him, most of the residents do not undergo medical tests as of when due, advising that they should always check their blood sugar level, cholesterol and HIV status every three months.
One of the beneficiaries, Mr Eteng Okon, who received free eye glasses for his sight problem, said that he was impressed with the free health care services provided by NAS.
Okon said that there were few health centers in the community, adding that most residents could not afford the cost of health services because majority of them were farmers.
He thanked NAS for the humanitarian service, saying that it would go a long way in improving the health condition of the people.
Another beneficiary, Mrs Mercy Bassey, who was treated for a tooth problem, also thanked NAS for their goodwill service.
A cross section of residents who received free drugs on different health problems, commended NAS for their humanitarian service.
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