When the late Dr. Enyi Okereke traveled home in the fall of 2008, his mission was to provide emergency care to trauma victims and train surgeons at the National Orthopedic Hospital, Enugu. Then the unimaginable happened: Dr. Okereke, who was Chief, Division of Foot and Ankle Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania Health Systems and an Associate Professor in Orthopedic Surgery at the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Medicine, suffered a heart attack during his medical mission. Sadly, he became a victim of the very inadequate emergency medical services that he tried to improve.
Today, a foundation established in his memory, The Enyi MD Foundation, is committed to improving the dire state of emergency healthcare in Nigeria, so that more lives won’t be cut short. The Foundation is already having a measurable impact. At the 2010 ANPA conference on July 3, Ms. Moriam Tokunbo Okereke, the Executive Director of The Enyi MD Foundation, presented a generous sum of $10,000 to ANPA for its emergency medical services (EMS) program. The EMS program will train and provide certification to physicians and other health care professionals in Nigeria on AHA (American Heart Association) Basic life support (BLS), Advanced cardiac life support (ACLS), and Pediatric advanced life support (PALS). The EMS program will train and provide certification to physicians and other health care professionals in Nigeria on AHA (American Heart Association) Basic life support (BLS), Advanced cardiac life support (ACLS), and Pediatric advanced life support (PALS).
A major funding source for its activities is the Annual Enyi MD Foundation 5k Run and Family Walk, which will hold Sunday, October 3, 2010 at Cooper River Park, N. Park Drive & McClellan Blvd, Pennsauken NJ 08110. The Foundation has set a $50,000 goal for this year’s fundraiser to support programs including: partnership with ANPA to provide training programs for first responders in Nigeria, provision of fully equipped ambulances for first responders, and the creation of medical emergency hotlines in Nigeria. Contributions will also support the Dr. Enyi Okereke International Fellowship Fund set up through the Orthopedic Research and Education Foundation (OREF) of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons.
Dr. Okereke was a stalwart ANPA member and until his death, its National Treasurer and Chairman of the ANPA-New Jersey Chapter. We call on all ANPA members and indeed all friends of Nigeria to support this noble cause. To learn more visit the website of The Enyi MD Foundation.