Tuesday, June 29, 2010

First Lady gets citizen of distinction award

First Lady, Dame Patience Goodluck Jonathan was yesterday in Toronto, Canada, named the 2010 Citizen of Distinction by the Management of Toronto East General Hospital.

A statement issued by her Media Assistant, Ayo Adewuyi, said the honour was conferred on her during her visit to the hospital, which was part of events of the G-8 spouses programme holding in that country.

According to the statement, "It is in recognition of her continued support to the poor through her youth scholarship awards and medical support and assistance to children with heart conditions."

Toronto East General Hospital (TEGH), the statement noted, is a large Urban Full-Service Community Teaching Hospital providing comprehensive care to a diverse population of 400,000 people representing over 45,000 cultural and linguistic groups.

It said that the visit by the First Lady was the first of such by any visiting dignitary.

The 2010 Citizen of Distinction Award was presented to her by the Chief Executive Office of the hospital, Rob Devitt accompanied by the hospital Foundation chair, Teresa Vasilopolous and the top management of the hospital.

The First Lady, the statement said, assured the medical staff of the commitment of President Goodluck Jonathan to the realization of the three health related Millennium Development Goals namely, reduction of child and infant mortality; improving Maternal health and combating HIV/AIDS.

According to her, "As a mother, I recognize the hardship the women of Nigeria go through during child birth and I am working with relevant Government agencies to ensure our women enjoy the pleasure of motherhood."

She expressed the hope that the award which automatically makes her the Champion of Toronto East General Hospital would be the beginning of good working relationship with Nigerian Health Institutions, particularly the National hospital, Abuja.

She commended the efforts of the health workers for providing life-saving care for the patients particularly women and children, pointing out that the exploits of Professor Isa Odidi and Dr Leke Badmus-two Canadian-Nigerians- in Canadian health care delivery served as a testimony to Nigeria's capacity to participate globally in health related issues.

President of TEGH, Teresa Vasilopolous, said the visit represented the attention that the Hospital has been garnering on a national scale for its high quality patient care and many awards of excellence as the destination of "Healthcare Excellence."

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