The Rebecca Foundation, an initiative of Ghana’s First Lady, Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo, has held a medical outreach for over 500 residents of Mirigu and surrounding areas in the Kasena-Nankana West District of the Upper East Region.
The one-day event was held at the premises of the Mirigu CHPS compound where residents were screened and treated for various ailments.
Participants were taken through screening procedures for Diabetes, Malaria, Hepatitis, hypertension and a voluntary testing for Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS.
The Kasena-Nankana West District was the first stop of the medical team which will also visit other areas in the region including the Nabdam, Builsa South and the Bawku West Districts.
The team of Doctors, Laboratory Assistants and Nurses, who arrived in the district Sunday, attended to the huge crowd that turned out for the exercise, with special focus on the aged, women and children.
Speaking to the media, leader of the Outreach program, which is one of the pillars of the Rebecca Foundation, Dr. Ezekiel Agyekum-Obeng said the outreach was to create awareness among the people and also help address their health problems.
He said the Foundation has for the past years through the outreach program gone out into communities in Ghana to interact with them as a way to find solutions to their health challenges.
Dr. Agyekum-Obeng, who was impressed with the huge turnout for the screening exercise, encouraged the people in the selected districts to embrace the outreach and use it to access their health conditions.
He intimated that serious cases that would require surgeries or may need further medical attention will be reported to the Office of the First Lady and the Foundation for action to be taken.
He said: “We are here as the Rebecca Foundation as part of the medical outreach program going on nationwide, to have interaction with the people, to access them and to screen them medically for their health problems and also help them with medications.
“We will screen the people for medical problems such as hypertension, diabetes, Malaria, and hepatitis. There will also be voluntary screening for people who will want to test for tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS and if there is any special need or the need for a surgery, we will refer such persons to the foundation and the first lady who over the years has helped dozens of people pay for their surgeries”.
“This is our first stop in the northern part of Ghana and today we are in the Kasena-Nankana west district. From here, we will also go to areas such as the Bawku West, Nabdam, and the Builsa South districts”.
Roger Atasige, the regent who received the medical team on behalf of the Mirigu chief expressed the gratitude of his people to them and Mrs. Rebecca Akufo Addo for bringing the medical outreach to his community.
He enumerated a number of challenges affecting the smooth delivery of health care in his area and appealed to the Foundation and the First Lady to come to their aid.
He lauded the initiative and prayed for the smooth execution of the exercise nationwide.
Responding to the concerns of the Chief during an interview, Dr. Abdul Tawab Azumah, coordinator of the outreach, said the challenges facing health care delivery in the area will be documented and a report made available to theOffice of the First Lady for prompt solutions.
“The Chief stated a number of issues including none functional CHPS compounds so from here we will visit some of such facilities to have a look at them and document them and give feedback to the First Lady to take action because health is an important part of her campaign and as a mother of the nation, she is so keen on that”. He stated.
The District Chief Executive (DCE) for the area, Gerard Ataogye, reiterated the need for the people to participate in the screening exercise, with a call on them to take issues of their health seriously.
He praised Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo and the Upper East Regional Minister, Tangoba Abayage, for their commitment to improving the health service in his district and appealed to the people to keep faith with government for more life-changing interventions.
So far, the Rebecca Foundation Medical Outreach program has screened over 10,000 people and has visited seven regions. The team has also supported over 10 surgical cases.