By Eseoghene Emuke
Nigeria’s oil giant, Matrix Energy Group, has organised a one-week free healthcare services to thousands old people in Itsekiri communities in the Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State.
The company said the free healthcare was part of its avowed commitment to address myriads of health challenges confronting residents of the area particularly the elderly.
The beneficiaries were drawn from Ubeji, Ifiekporo, Egbokodo Itsekiri, Ajaetan and Ijala Ikeren communities which formed parts of its host.
The free medical outreach was held at the Ogiame Ikenwoli Hospital, Ubeji, a first-class hospital, built and being operated by the oil firm in memory of the 20th Olu of Warri, who died in December, 2020.
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Head of Safety, Matrix Energy Group, Fred Olomuro, said the programme was designed to reach out to the elderly who are often time abandoned by their relations and the society.
He said a team medical personnel of Matrix Energy Group treated beneficiaries with common health challenges such as malaria, diabetes, hypertension and among others which mostly prevalent among old people.
Olomuro disclosed that the company plans to organize a bigger medical outreach that will attend to surgical needs of the aged in the areas in the future.
“This programme is an opportunity to reach out to the elderly. They are usually abandoned when they get to this part of life.
On his part, Medical Director, Ogiame Ikenwoli Hospital, Dr. Olusegun Olisa, said the outreach entailed a free health talk, doctor’s consultation and treatment.
Olisa, who is a trauma and Orthopaedic surgeon, stated that the choice of the elderlies is to bridge the gap between old people’s easy access to healthcare and ensure that the “defenseless” age group are catered for.
According to him, the programme will also usher in the hospital’s geriatric unit, where emergency lines will be given to them to call whenever they have serious or minor health problems.
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“All they have to do is just to register with N500. Even if they are at home and they have any problem, they can call the number we are going to give to them and the ambulance will pick them.
“If there is need for us to treat them at home, we will treat them at home. If there is need for us to bring them to the hospital, we will bring them for admission.
“That is the whole idea of the programme. So that once they have any issue, they don’t have to wait for their children or grandchildren to take them to the hospital,” the MD said.
The surgeon urged the general populace to take advantage modern and affordable facilities of the hospital.
One of the beneficiaries, Mercy Ukueje, expressed gratitude to the organisers of the free medical outreach.
“It was announced in the community that there will be a free medical treatment. That’s why I came. My sugar level was tested. They gave me medicines, all free. I thank God for the project. And I thank the organisers. People should come here and be sure to be well treated,” Ukueje said.