The federal government is presently providing free medical services to residents of Niger State, with no fewer than 1,500 people being attended to by medical personnel in Minna, the state capital.
The free medical services is being provided by the state government in collaboration with the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Bida and hosted by Bago Foundation, a non-governmental organisation, floated by the member representing Chanchaga federal constituency in the House of Representatives.
There are 35 medical practitioners, nine of them consultants in various fields, attending to the patients.
Dr Abubakar Usman, a consultant paediatrics at the FMC Bida, speaking at the flag-off of the “Medical Mission” on Thursday, said that areas of intervention included general health problems, maternal and child health as well as abnormality in vision.
According to Dr Usman, who was elated that the “medical mission” attracted many patients, said the scheme would provide 250 eyeglasses to those with vision impairment, while surgery would be carried out for 20 others with “more serious problems”.
“There is an acceptance of the programme. From the response we are getting, and from the cases we are seeing, patients with eye problems constitute 30 per cent, followed by patients who are hypertensive.
“We are attending to about 250 patients everyday. Those that need surgery, we will take them to a standard hospital where we will carry out such surgeries,” Usman said.
In a message to the programme’s Chief Medical Director of FMC, Bida, Dr. Aminu Usman, described the programme as “one of the ways we ameliorate the sufferings of the ordinary people by taking health care services closer to their doorsteps”.
Dr. Usman said the FMC in partnership with the federal government are providing everything free to the patients, adding that “even the surgeries we will carry out and the drugs being dispensed are free”.
The chief medical director said the programme would move to the Niger north senatorial zone before the middle of the year.
Most of the patients attended to appreciated the federal government for coming to their aid.