By Patrick Ochei
The Association of Resident Doctors (ARD), FMC Asaba Chapter, Delta State, on Monday stormed Okpanam community in Oshimili North Local Government Area for sensitisation on the dreaded breast and prostate cancer as part of the ARD’s 2020 annual medical outreach programme.
The doctors numbering about 10, apart from giving consultancy services and examining multitudes in cancer related issues, also treated and dispensed drugs to over 70 patients who were attended to.
The ARD’s Publicity Committee Chairman, Dr. Alexander Awunor, gave glory to God for making this year’s AGM that culminated in the medical outreach possible in spite of Covid-19 and other circumstantial challenges of the year.
He acknowledged that the medical reach out programme was solely sponsored by the Association; he however, appreciated the Ugoani and Okpanam community for providing them with the community hall and security for the outreach.
Awunor raised a concern to the effect that most rural dwellers were not even aware of their health status, with Okpanam as a case study.
He stressed that it could be as a result of ignorance or low standard of living; therefore advising the Government, corporate entities and well-to-do individuals to create platforms that would help grassroots people regularly check and access medicare for themselves.
Dr. Awunor said the people of Okpanam who came out for the health programme were exceedingly happy and wished for them to come back again.
According to Awunor, “Yes, the government is doing their best, but they need to do more especially in adequate motivation of healthcare workers to prevent the massive brain drain being experienced in the country today. They also need to make huge investment in the health sector by putting up health institutions that will meet international standards.
“It’s because doctors are driven by passion, that is why you see us doing all of this to complement the efforts of government. We are enjoying our job, but then we need more support, care and attention from government to enable us measure up to an extent with our colleagues abroad. It is painful seeing how we undergo so much stress to perform our duties with motivations that are not commensurate. If the government could seriously bridge this lack of motivation gap, it will definitely reduce the brain drain.
“Doctors are trained to always be responsive, humane and to treat people with empathy. This is very important part of the profession as it draws us closer and makes our patients comfortable.
“However, factors like stress, working conditions and other environmental issues can have effects on these attributes. But in all, doctors always have empathy for their patients. That is part of our hypocritical oath and we always uphold our oath”, Doctor Awunor explained.
Earlier before the medical outreach, the Association of Resident Doctors visited leaders of Okpanam – HRM Michael Mbanefo Ogbolu, the Ugoani of Okpanam and HRM Obi Martha Dunkwu, the Omu of Okpanam to intimate them of the programme.
They were glad and the outcome was the approval to use the town hall and of course the vigilante group was alerted to be on ground.
The patients who were attended to were really joyous as the doctors performed Blood sugar screening, dispensed drugs for hypertension, diabetes and anagelic, and of course gave free consultations.
The patients prayed for the doctors for such humanitarian gestures and beckoned on them to return again.