She was orphaned at a tender age and when she grew up; she decided to prevent the death of rural dwellers. That is the story of Dr. Adefunmilola Williams-Daudu, the Executive Director of Miteda Wellness Initiative who started free medical outreach in Ikaramu- Akoko six years ago. BABATOPE OKEOWO reports the free medical outreach of a Canada based medical doctor
For three days, the Miteda Wellness Initiative, a baby of Dr. Williams- Daudu treated the people of hyperlipidemia, hypertension, diabetes, cervical cancer, and hepatitis in the rustic community of Ikaramu-Akoko in Akoko Northwest Local Government area of Ondo State. In all, about 4,000 indigent people of Ikaramu-Akoko and its environment in Akoko Northwest Local Government area of the State benefitted from the free medical outreach of a Non Government Organization (NGO), Miteda Wellness Initiative.
The NGO which is owned by Erijiyan-Ekiti born medical doctor also distributed free eye glasses, wheelchairs, walking aids and screened people of HIV/AIDS. Dr. Williams-Daudu who is the Executive Director of the NGO said she started the free medical outreach six years ago when she clocked 40 years. Instead of bringing in people to eat and drink and celebrate, she decided to embark on the medical outreach that would be of immense benefit to the people of the community. To have been an orphan at early age, Dr Williams-Daudu said she knew her parents must have died of preventable sickness hence the need to come to the aid of the needy in the society so as not to die at early age. Her words “This is not the first time, it is the sixth time. The first one we did actually happened in 2013 when I clocked 40 years. And I’m an orphan who God has given privilege.
“I would say that I did not know my mum and when I was about clocking 40 I called my husband and I told him I will be going to the village to go and celebrate my birthday and he just made jest of me, but I was able to call one of my colleagues, Dr. Fagbemi and some other doctors and we came to this town (Ikaram-Akoko) instead of calling people to come and eat rice. “I did not know my mum and I did not what killed her, so if the aged are screened, we will identify the problems early enough in order to tackle it.
“That was what gave me the motivation and eight of us came; eight doctors, 12 nurses and two laboratory scientists. We came in and we attended to about 325 people that day. We treated the diseases that they diagnosed with and we did a follow up. “In 2016, I brought some of my colleagues from Canada to come and train five nurses from the local government here and we gave them medical equipment worth $10,000..
“The programme is growing. We have been registered with CAC and we want to give back to the society. I’m highly privileged; I want to thank God for it.” This year’s medical outreach, she said has reached about 3,000 people and people were still coming for different ailments. She said about 800 eye glasses have been distributed while people with dental issue have been attended to. The Medical team for the outreach she said included 30 ophthalmologists and optometrists as well as 50 nurses.
There medical practitioners, she said were from various parts of the country. Aside the medical practitioners, she said there were 248 volunteers. Giving breakdown of those who have benefitted from the medical outreach since it began, Dr Williams-Daudu said “Last year, we diagnosed and treated 2,343, the year before 1,200, previously, we treated 1000 and the first one we did we had 325.”
This year outreach, she said included physiotherapist while the number of nurses, dentists and drug given out have increased tremendously more than the previous years. Her words “What we did differently this year was that we started early we also brought in a dietician and a psychologist. There are some people who don’t even need drugs, they only need to have physiotherapist touch. And we also plan to do a follow up.
“By the grace God, next year we are going to have a festival of surgery done, because most of the people are indigent. They are people with a very big hernia. We have a lot with breast lump. We brought in one of our gadgets to examine breast and here today, we have seen people with breast lump. “When you detect those things early enough, you actually get rid of them. We want to do an intervention, so we are planning for festival of surgery in the first quarter of next year. Government cannot do everything, there is what we called private public partnership and if we are saying government will do it alone, we are just deceiving ourselves.”