11th April, 2017
By Kazeem Ugbodaga
No fewer than 60,000 residents from seven local government and 12 local council development areas, LCDAs have benefitted from the Eko Health Mission programme of the Lagos State Government.
The councils are: Ojo, Oto-Awori, Iba, Badagry, Badagry-West, Olorunda, Oshodi, Isolo, Ejigbo, Amuwo-Odofin, Oriade, Ajeromi, Ifelodun, Apapa, Iganmu, Ikeja, Onigbongbo and Ojodu
The Eko Health Mission is a medical intervention programme sponsored by the State government to provide free healthcare services to residents of Lagos across the 20 local governments areas and 37 local council development areas of the state.
Speaking at the official flag-off of the mission on Tuesday, at New City Primary School, Palm Avenue, Mushin area of Lagos, Southwest Nigeria, Governor of Lagos, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode noted that the Eko Health Mission was in furtherance of his administration’s objective to take health care to the grassroots and underserved areas in the State.
The governor who was represented by his deputy, Dr. Idiat Oluranti Adebule explained that the programme was introduced as a strategic initiative and comprehensive medical outreach programme to complement the established healthcare system in the Lagos for the attainment of sustainable development goals.
He added that the health mission programme would avail residents the opportunity of being screened and managed for non-communicable diseases such as hypertension and diabetes, common ailments, eye diseases and dental problems.
“I would like to enjoin all residents to take advantage of this opportunity to know their health status and receive treatment from our team of qualified medical personnel. These experts are equipped with the knowledge, skills and tools to provide the appropriate care you need by applying global best practices, ensuring equality and professionalism at all points of contact”, the governor said.
Ambode, while commending members of the health mission team for their commitment to the success of the initiative stated that it was gratifying that beneficiaries of the programme included the elderly, pregnant women and people living with disabilities.
State Commissioner for Health, Dr Jide Idris, while speaking on the importance of the programme said that the state government was continuously finding ways to improve the health status of its ever-increasing population, adding that the plan for achieving this was based on the Health Policy Thrust of the State which was guided by the noble goal that every Lagosians enjoyed unfettered access to qualitative healthcare without any barrier whatsoever.
Idris disclosed that the strategies adopted in implementing these policies included the introduction and provision of various programmes that had direct impact on the health outcome of Lagosians, stressing that these programmes were geared towards promoting health, detecting diseases early and offering treatment and rehabilitation.
He posited that the overarching goal now was ensuring that residents had access to Universal Health Coverage, adding that the Ministry of Health was working tirelessly to develop and implement strategies, programmes, interventions and initiatives to improve the health outcome of all Lagosians.
“One of these interventions is the Eko Health Mission, which the State Government has used over the years to complement health service delivery in the state. This was put in place, as part of the State Government’s quest to find ways to take healthcare to the grassroots and underserved areas of Lagos State, by addressing pressing health issues of the rural communities in the state”, the commissioner said.
While noting that the health missions were short-term interventions, Idris stated that the programme was geared towards the strategic development plan of ensuring Universal Health Coverage, adding that the missions provided services that took health care to the doorsteps of its citizens at no cost to the people.
“These health missions are significant because they enable this administration to provide healthcare services to all who come irrespective of their age, gender, socio-economic status and affiliations”, he added.
Idris stated that the vision of sustainable healthcare and universal coverage demanded that the State adopted an approach that was not only efficient, but also effective in addressing the growing health demand of Lagos megacity.
The commissioner noted the medical mission would be carried out across the 20 Local Governments and 37 local council development areas for 3-days every week and will end on 8 June, 2017.