The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), The Calvary Area Headquarters, Province 89, Oshodi, Lagos has organised a medical outreach for residents of the community as part of activities to mark its 25th anniversary.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the medical outreach was organised in collaboration with Chike Okoli Foundation, Emzor Pharmaceuticals and Pharmatex Industries on Saturday in Lagos.
The medical outreach included free consultation, checking of blood pressure, blood sugar screening, eye tests and general check up, among others.
Mr Jeffrey Aganbi, Pastor-In-Charge of the Area, said that no fewer than 600 adults and children benefited from the medical outreach.
Aganbi added that free drugs were dispensed to the beneficiaries based on their health conditions, saying that scores of children were dewormed as they went home with gifts items.
According to him, the outreach, which has been on for over 10 years ago, is aimed at improving the well-being of people in the area.
The pastor said the water project was solely executed by church to provide a source of water supply to residents of the community and its environs noting that access to water had been a great challenge within the community.
He urged the state government to intensify efforts toward making healthcare services available, affordable and accessible to people in the low income communities.
“The major objective for the outreach is to bring healthcare services closer to the community at no cost at all, because access to medical care is a big challenge in Nigeria.
“A lot of people with one underlying ailment or the other are dying in silence because they can’t afford the exorbitant hospital bills.
“The water project is one of the church’s humanitarian gestures to mark its 25 years silver jubilee anniversary.
“As access to water has been a big problem to residents of the community, the church deemed it necessary to provide them with the borehole.
“And considering the economic condition of the country, if the government can make healthcare services available, affordable and accessible to masses, it will relieve a whole lots of burden on the masses,” Aganbi said.
David, also a consulting doctor at the event, identified ignorance as the major contributing factor to health conditions of most Nigerian adults, as many people with high blood pressure were not even aware that they had the condition.
According to him, high blood pressure is the leading cause of death among adults.
David said that regular check up can help to avert some critical conditions of blood pressure that may lead to death.
He recommended that every family should have the blood pressure testing apparatus, to enable the elders in the family keep a regular check of their BP.
“Every family is supposed to have the BP testing apparatus to enable them maintain a regular check of their BP status.
“This is because high blood pressure as a silent killer is the leading cause of death now.
“And almost 90 per cent of the patients consulted here today are hypertensive, which a majority of them are not even aware that they have the condition because they don’t check,” David said.
Ms Obiageli Adimachukwu, the Programme Coordinator, Chike Okoli Foundation, a non-governmental organisation, identified stress as a major factor causing the conditions of most Nigerians.
According to her, the economic condition and hardships in the country are taking a toll on the residents, saying that the people are stressed out.
She advised that people should constantly check their sugar level, cholesterol level, eat healthy diet, have rest and exercise to avert conditions that might trigger high BP.
A representative of Emzor, Esther Ayo, said that the outreach was one the ways the company makes healthcare services accessible to people in the community, who might not afford hospital bills.
Ayo expressed the commitment of the company to continually collaborate with the RCCG to ensure that members of the church and residents of the area have access to healthcare services at no cost.
An elder in the church, Mr Godwin Ohadugha, lauded the church for the outreach, saying it was one of the numerous humanitarian gestures of the church to the community.
Ohadugha said that the church had organised a series of empowerment programmmes and seminars for the youths of the community and members of the church.
“Apart from the outreach, the church is so concerned about the welfare of the members; the church takes care of our children.
“Sometimes, the church sponsors of the children to learn some skills such as barbing, tailoring, hair dressing and other apprenticeship programmes.
“Before now, access to water was a big challenge, but by tomorrow a borehole water will be inaugurated for use by the residents, and the project is courtesy of the church,” he said.
A beneficiary of the outreach, Mr Bertram Oparaocha, appreciated the church for organising the outreach that provided an opportunity for many indigent citizens to access healthcare.
Oparaocha said that free drugs were given to him, having received many other free medical services at no cost.
He was optimistic that the gesture would attract more members and recognition for the church going forward.
Another beneficiary, Mrs Onyinyechi Chijindu, described the outreach as an “eye opener’ that lead to the revealing of her health condition.
Onyinyechi, said she never knew that she was hypertensive until she consulted with the doctor at the outreach.