By Peter Okolie
No fewer than 2,500 persons benefited from a five-day free medical outreach organised by a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), ‘I Volunteer to Inspire and Empower’ (I-VIE), in Awka, Anambra.
I-VIE founder, Mr Vincent Igwe, told newsmen at the end of the exercise on Wednesday in Awka that the gesture was aimed at impacting positively on the lives of the less privileged.
“It is a way of repaying the favour I received in 2015 when I had an accident that almost claimed my life and was offered free medical services by an unknown woman.
“The outreach also focused on creating awareness on the benefit of proper hygiene, best practices in health management and the need for routine check-up,” Igwe said.
According to him, the NGO had organised similar exercise in 2016 and 2017 in Obiakpo Local Government Area of Rivers.
He further said that Awka was chosen for the organisation’s 2018 programme, following Gov. Willie Obiano’s visit to Rivers to solicit support and investment of Anambra people in the state.
Igwe, who said the foundation planned to increase the number of beneficiaries by 2019, noted that the next outreach would include surgery.
The head of the medical team, Dr Chukwuka Onwubuiko, said that diabetes, arthritis and waist pain were prevalent among the people.
“The programme focused primarily on screening and treatment of high blood pressure, malaria, diabetes, hepatitis B and C, arthritis, fastening blood sugar, typhoid, body mass index screening, and vitamin deficiencies.
“Dental and optical services were also offered to the people by physicians.
“Basically, the team offered advice on the best daily practices which the people should adopt for healthier living,” he said.
In his remarks, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr Josephat Akabuike, said the state government was committed to uplifting health facilities in the state.
Akabuike commended Igwe for sponsoring the programme and expressed optimism that the people would benefit from the basic medical services it offered.