University dons and other health professionals have called on the Federal Government to prioritize the care of the elderly by building more old people’s homes as part of strategies for addressing their current plights.
The experts including Prof. Bolanle Fatuga, dean, Faculty of Clinical Sciences, Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU), Sagamu Campus; Prof. Adewale Sule-Odu, a professor of obstetrics and gynaecology, OOUTH; Dr Olubukola Jeminusi, a lecturer in the Department of Community Medicine, OOUTH, among others made the call during a community health outreach held at the Palace of the Akarigbo of Remoland, Oba Babatunde Adewale Ajayi, to kick-off this year’s Faculty of Clinical Sciences Week of the college. In his lecture titled “The Care of the Elderly”, Dr Olubukola Jeminusi said aside from the establishment of old people’s home and recreation centres, social and economic policies should equally be put in place to support the capabilities, wellbeing and autonomy of older persons. Jeminusi said Nigeria’s ageing population of 65 years and above is gradually decreasing, adding that there are roughly 6 million elderly people (65 years and above) in the country, which represented 3 per cent of the total population. He listed challenges such as lack of affordable healthcare provision, lack of household help, weakness, arthritis, failing vision, hearing problem, low libido, the challenge with bone density, memory loss, and wrinkles as some of the challenges associated with ageing. Receiving the experts in his palace, the Akarigbo of Remoland, Oba Babatunde Adewale Ajayi appreciated them for their good gestures in bringing the health awareness advocacy to his domain, in order to enlighten his chiefs and offer free medical screening to them. Earlier, the duo of Prof. Fatuga and Prof. Sule-Odu noted that the programme was part of the faculty’s community effort at reaching out to the people for the purpose of rendering community service. The Head, Sales, and Marketing, Seagreen Pharmaceutical Limited, Mr. Adelodun Adeniyi Wasiu, disclosed that as part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR), Seagreen is committed to enhancing the health and wellness status of the Nigerian society, adding that the company long to see a Nigeria where everyone has access to basic essential medicines regardless of their socio-economic status. Speaking on the rationale behind the partnership with OOUTH, he said the company decided to organize the medical outreach and free screening exercise to give back to the community and to promote healthy living among Nigerians, adding that regular health screening is good as it involves checking patients’ current health status and risks.