By Chinenye Ezenwa
Tristate Healthcare System Limited has partnered with the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) as part of its welfare programme for professionals across Nigeria and Africa. The health care company was at the just concluded NBA Annual General Conference in Lagos where it provided healthcare screening and medical treatment to lawyers.
Vice-President/Chief Operating Officer, Dr Olukunle Iyanda, said Tristate did full screening of lawyers at the conference, which was the first time it would happen at any NBA conference.
The tests, he said, include urinalysis, cholesterol testing, prostate cancer screening, glucose level checks and body mass index examinations to determine obesity. “The tests are to prevent issues of sudden death, high blood pressure for those who have it but don’t know; people who think it’s only when they’re fat that their obese; all of which contribute to heart diseases. Our strength is cardiovascular diseases treatment. We have done about 150 open heart surgeries and a lot of other cardiac interventions. We discovered that prevention is better than cure.”
He said a full cardiac evaluation was also done for lawyers, which involves heart ultrasound. “We also provided emergency services and respiratory care, which has to do with issues of sleep disorder,” he said. Iyanda urged lawyers, who he said are prone to depression and sleeplessness, to always “know their numbers”.
“When we say ‘know their numbers’, we’re talking about knowing their cholesterol level, their glucose level, their heart rate. The frequency of the tests depends on the age. If you’re above 50, you have to undergo such tests at least once every six months. If you’re in your 40s you may do it once a year. It also depends on what the numbers say,” he said.
He said 56 staff of Tristate Healthcare was deployed to the conference. “It’s like a value-added service to the NBA,” he explained.
Also, the President/Chief Executive Officer of Tristate Healthcare System Limited, Prof Kamar Adeleke, who delivered lectures at the conference, identified ways of preventing sudden death. Adeleke said sudden death was a major problem in Nigeria, adding that leading causes were diseases of the cardiovascular system. Ranking second are diseases of the nervous system and respiratory system, he added.
“It is estimated that more than seven million lives per year are lost to sudden cardiac (SCD) death worldwide, including over 300,000 in the United States,” he said. Quoting the World Health Organisation, he said one out of every five Nigerian adults over the age of 30 will likely die prematurely from non-communicable diseases, including cardiovascular diseases.