By Sani Idris
Two Islamic Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), Movement for Islamic Culture and Awareness (MICA), Kaduna Chapter, and the Islamic Medical Association of Nigeria (IMAN), on Sunday began a four-day medical services outreach to no fewer than 1,000 people in Unguwan Mu’azu community in Kaduna.
The medical services offered by the NGOs included diagnosis and treatment for malaria, typhoid, hepatisis ‘B’ and HIV tests, dental, eyes, ears and throat checks, and physiotherapy.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the free medical services were also geared towards health promotion, prevention, education, clinical diagnosis, investigations and treatment.
The Ameer of MICA, Dr Sulaiman Zibiri, said the outreach, being part of their corporate social responsibility, was aimed at cushioning the effects posed by the harsh economy, especially in the area of assessing quality medical services.
He explained that the outreach was their 9th annual rural ‘Medical Caravan’, which, however, due to security challenges made them shift to cities.
“We usually carry out our outreaches in the outskirt of Kaduna, especially in the hinterlands, but because of insecurity we moved it to the cities.”
He also explained that MICA was set up 20 years ago to promote Islamic culture and make people aware of the essence of their being created and the things they need to do concerning their religion.
“Apart from the medical caravan, we carry out other activities like free distribution of clothing in rural communities, annual Ramadan lectures and fortnightly lectures”, he said.
Zibiri further said that MICA also focused at sensitizing the people towards handling threats posed by deadly viral diseases and complementing government efforts in preventing them.
He urged communities to imbibe personal hygiene and environmental cleanliness as preventive measures against outbreak.
“Health is wealth, people should take their health seriously, when they hear anything, especially free medical care, they should come out en-mass and use the opportunity to test themselves,” he said.
Also, an Ex-officio of IMAN, a faith-based NGO, Lawal Atiku, said their role in the exercise was to provide manpower in order to achieve success of the outreach.
“Our manpower assistance is to ensure that the outreach achieves 100 per cent of what it is expected of it.
“During the exercise, medical volunteers will carry out diagnosis; treatment, medical procedures; drugs, eye tests and other medical consumables are also given to patients free of charge,”he said.
The beneficiaries who trouped out en masse to benefit from the medical outreach service, expressed gratitude to the NGOs for the kind gesture.
One of them, Amina Ussaini, a nonagenerian, said she suffers high blood pressure and ulcer.
“I no longer buy my drugs as at when due, this outreach is timely and I appreciate them so much, may Allah continue to replenish their pockets,” she said.
She, therefore, called on other well-meaning Nigerians to emulate the group.
Another beneficiary, Lawal Saleh, said he stools with blood stains and was given medication and advice which he is sure would cure his ailments.
He thanked the NGOs for the gesture and urged other people in the community to come out en masse for the free medical service.
NAN reports that at the sideline of the event, the founder and President of an NGO, Conflict Management and Social Development Initiative, Abdulkareem Mustapha, donated crutches as a contribution to the medical outreach.