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NYSC member gives free eye treatment, drugs, glasses to IDPs

By News Express on 03/09/2015

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A National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) member, Mr. Justin Eghaghara, has given free eye treatment, drugs and glasses to no fewer than 200 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the FCT.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) also reports children and care givers at the Abuja Children Home at Karu, a satellite town in the FCT, benefited from the gesture.

Eghaghara, a Batch C corps member, from Delta, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that he embarked on the project to contribute his quota to the community he serves.

A graduate of Optometry, he said the project tagged: ‘Better Vision for the Changing Nation,’ was aimed at providing free eye care services to IDPs, orphans and prison inmates in the territory.

He said the project was carried out with the assistance of two other corps members, also graduates of Optometry, and three optometrists currently practicing in various eye clinics in the territory.

“The project which I divided into five phases is my personal NYSC project to contribute my quota to the community before the end of my service year.

“Basically, what we do is screening of vision problems and management of such conditions in form of drugs and spectacle correction.

“If the conditions involve more specialised intervention, we refer such persons to the hospital for further treatment.”

Eghaghara said they had attended to and treated more than 200 IDPs at various camps in the FCT, 70 children and adults, including care givers at the Abuja Children Home, Karu.

He said the group treated eye diseases ranging from cornea disease, eye infections and allergies.

“More than 500 IDPs are registered to receive treatment but we were able to treat just half of the number because we are not expecting such figure.

“When some of them saw that the treatment was free more persons joined so we were overwhelmed by the number.

“We treated various eye cases including someone who had a piece of foreign object in his eye.

“The most prevalent case was allergic conjunctivitis and bacteria conjunctivitis. We also had cases of suspected glaucoma and our examination showed that some had hypertension.”

The corps member observed that most of the eye diseases treated at the camp were likely caused by the unhygienic environment and overcrowded condition the IDPs were exposed to.

He said the environment, weather and poor immune system of some of the IDPs were major triggers of eye sensitivity which led to allergic reactions.

He added that glaucoma was expected as it was prevalent in Africa.

“After screening and examination, we administered medications and gave out eye drop. Cases that require eye glasses we get the necessary and equivalent power of the glass required and give immediately.

“Those we suspected of having hypertension were those at the orphanage. We checked their blood pressure and it was high, so we advised them to get medical treatment.”

The corps member said over 50 eye glasses were distributed and decried the lackadaisical attitude of some Nigerians to health.

Eghaghara also called on the Federal Government to give priority to primary healthcare delivery by providing better facilities and reduce cost of medical treatment to make it affordable.

According to him, the cost of treating most eye diseases is expensive; many people cannot afford the expensive treatment and so they do not bother going to the hospital.

“Eye treatment is a specialised field; it is not treated like some other diseases where one just prescribes medications.

“But when treatment is free or subsidised then more people will go for it. If government can assist the people, it will help because eye care is part of primary care.”

The corps member said that the Nigeria Optometric Association (NOA), Abuja Chapter, and the Women Optometrists in Nigeria (WON), Abuja Chapter, assisted in providing medical equipment and drugs for the project.

Eghaghara said that the National Assembly Eye Clinic and the Smiley Optical Services, Abuja, also assisted. (NAN)

Source News Express

Posted 03/09/2015 05:13:23 AM


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