…As Lagos targets 1000 Beneficiaries
No fewer than 60 people, mainly children have benefited from the Lagos State Government sponsored Free Limb Deformity Corrective Surgery and Rehabilitative Programme, an intervention targeted at the treatment and rehabilitation of people especially children with lower limb deformities.
Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Health, Dr.Olusegun Ogboye who disclosed this today when he visited latest beneficiaries of surgical intervention exercise at the Gbagada General Hospital, stated that the 60 beneficiaries were amongst the 213 potential beneficiaries that were earlier screened in the latest phase of the exercise.
“The Limb Deformity Corrective Surgery Program (LDCSP) started in 2007 as a medical assistance program for children with lower limb deformities that affect normal growth and function in children.
“It has since evolved into a multidisciplinary surgical outreach program that has reach more than 6,000 beneficiaries since its inception”, He said.
According to him, the Lagos State Government instituted the intervention programme to alleviate the sufferings children with limb deformities, improve their self-esteem and offer them a chance to compete and function normally in the society.
He said: “The State Government recognised that there are a lot of young people that have issues with bone deformities that have affected their self esteem and their ability to function normally in society, a lot of them sometimes can not afford the cost of a corrective surgery, and that has kept them like that for several years.
“Some of the aetiology of persons living with limb deformities include Micronutrient pathologies such as Rickets Disease, Traumatic injuries that lead to poorly managed fractures amongst others.
“Many of these deformities, which can be corrected by surgery and rehabilitation, when corrected will improve the health status of the beneficiaries, as well as foster a sense of self-worth that would consequently increase their opportunity, and capacity, to be economically empowered to care for themselves, their families and contribute positively to the society at large”.
Ogboye explained further that the latest phase of the programme commenced with a screening exercise of potential beneficiaries at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), adding that the result of the screening which was reviewed by a team of specialists resulted in the latest set of 60 beneficiaries who qualified and were subsequently booked for the surgical procedure.
“Those who pre-qualify for surgery then go through a series of diagnositc investigations including xrays, and blood tests to check for the form of the bone malformation, calcium levels and other basic parameters.
“Patients are then offered surgery and kept overnight for observation. This is supervised by our team of orthopedic surgeons, anesthetists, nurses, and other health professionals. After discharge, patients will come for followup visits at the clinic, and then also go through Physiotherapy to ensure we get the best outcomes”, the Permanent Secretary explained.
He stated that other potential beneficiaries who came for the screening exercise also benefitted from physiotherapy, nutrition counselling and support, health education as well as assistive mobility devices that will improve their health outcome.
Ogboye noted that the surgical intervention programme has over the years lead to improved health outcomes to beneficiaries adding that the latest phase of the exercise has once again demonstrated the commitment of the present administration to the fulfilling its Health and Environment mandate of the THEMES + agenda.
“This program often leads to improved mobility and health outcomes for the beneficiaries, and allows us to demonstrate our commitment as a State to develop our human capital and give our children a good platform to achieve their dreams and aspirations”. He said.
Speaking in the same vein, the Coordinator of the Programme, Dr. Tolulope Ajomale stated that the program is specifically designed for people who can not afford the cost of surgery adding that the State Government is tirelessly working to ensure that people get access to quality and affordable healthcare care delivery.
Dr. Ajomale appreciated the Governor for providing the needed support in the sucessful implementation of the surgical intervention programme adding that the state is currently working towards the target of about 1000 free surgeries for beneficiaries within the next couple of years.
He noted that the surgical intervention allows the State Government to generate data to create other targeted Disability-Intervention Strategies to help more people that may have been disadvantaged, healthwise, in one way or another.
Ajomale added the 60 beneficiaries, after being discharge, will be asked to come for followup visits at the clinic, and also go through physiotherapy to ensure the best outcomes.
Mr Lasisi Sulieman whose son benefitted from the intervention, appreciated the Lagos State Government for giving him and his family the opportunity to benefit from the free surgical intervention. He explained that his son has been suffering from pains resulting from the deformed limb from birth.
Suleiman explained further that he has taken his son to various health facilities for treatment for several years but could not afford the cost of surgery before he finally came to know of the State Government free limb deformity coorrective surgery which is free of charge.
“We have tried different doctors but the cost of the operations is very high we could not afford it. As he grew up we discovered that it is getting worse, luckily, we heard about this free limb deformity surgical programme which at the initial stage we never believed but after three weeks we were called to for some X-ray, and a message was sent to us that the operation is going to be carried out. I really appreciate the government for this opportunity”. He said.