By Kemi Akintokun
In a bid to ensure that children resume back to school healthy, the Orile Agege General Hospital (OAGH) in Lagos, says no fewer than 2,000 children in the community will benefit from its “Back-to- School Health Outreach”.
The Medical Director of the Hospital, Dr Sola Pitan, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), that the programme initiated in 2022, was a health promotional outreach targeted at meeting the school health needs of children in the community.
NAN reports that the theme of the programme is: “Back-To-School: Resume Healthy Academic Excellence.
Pitan said the week-long outreach which commenced on Aug. 7 would render free medical services to children from the ages of five to 15 years.
He said the services included full pediatrics evaluation, eye evaluation, ear check, dental oral check, nutrition/dietetics and social welfare service.
“For us in Orile Agege hospital, we are here to serve the community and over the years, we have noticed that the health seeking attitude of people in the community is low.
“Some of them prefer to go to the chemists or traditional healer and one of the the strategy we have put in place to change the narrative is the back to school programme which we started last year.
“Research has shown that some children don’t perform well in school because of health challenges that keep them out of school and affect their performance in the class.
“Through this programme, the children go through different screening to know their health status before resuming for the new academic session that will commence in September,” he said.
The Medical Director commended all the sponsors who supported the programme and the Lagos State Government.
Speaking also, Dr Atinuke Onayiga, the Chairman of the Lagos Health Service Commission, describe the programme as a laudable initiative that should be emulated by other general hospitals in the state.
Onayiga, represented by Dr Mobolaji Olukoya the Commissioner two in the Commission emphasised the need for children to be mentally and physically prepare to enhance their performance before school resumption.
“ Our children must be healthy for us to have a healthy nation in the future and we are at the Commission are happy that this laudable programme is been sustained by the hospital to support children in the community,” she said.
Onayiga advised parents to give proper attention to the well-being of their children at all times.
Some of the children who spoke to NAN thanked the management of the hospital for organising and sustaining the programme.
Segun Adebayo, 10, said he was very happy to benefit from the programme the second time.
” My mum brought me here last year for this programme and I am happy to be here again because they gave me free glasses for reading,” he said.
Also Grace Johnson, 9, said she was happy to be part of the screening processes.
“My mother’s friend told her about this programme. I am happy she brought me here because they checked my eyes, ear, teeth and gave us egg and a drink,” she said.
Mrs Chinyere Nwosu, a mother who spoke to NAN commended the hospital for rendering the services to children in the community.
The ongoing programme will end on Friday. (NAN) www.nannews.ng
Edited by Vivian Ihechu