Due to poor diagnosis, and socio-economic status amongst other factors, a lot of Nigerians resign to their supposed fate of living with treatable diseases and medical conditions. The GEANCO Foundation stepped in just in time to change this narrative and give these patients a chance to smile again and truly mean it. In 2018, we extended our reach to laparoscopic surgery. We now perform minimally-invasive gallbladder, hernia, appendix, and gynaecological surgeries on underserved patients, train local surgeons on laparoscopy, and donate specialized equipment and instruments.
Our surgeries are conducted by skilled, compassionate American medical professionals with a desire to put smiles on the faces of the underserved. Not only do they donate their time and expertise, they also personally raise funds to help cover mission expenses. Zimmer Biomet and Medacta International, global orthopedic equipment manufacturers, have donated over $3 million thus far in equipment, instruments and cash for our missions. United Airlines has donated free flights to previous missions. NFL Hall of Fame quarterback, Warren Moon and the Golden State Warriors equally donated free sports apparel to our patients and their families. In addition, we donated a SIGN Fracture Care System to a university teaching hospital in Anambra State and trained local Nigerian surgeons on its use. As a result, they now repair serious bone fractures on a regular basis in a simple, inexpensive and sustainable way.
Our free surgical missions have successfully spanned across 15 years and so far, 710 beneficiaries have received free hip and knee replacements, bone fracture repairs, or minimally invasive surgeries. Also, $7.4m has been donated in medical equipment, instruments and supplies.
Though it is not always rosy, we are undaunted in our resolve to provide quality healthcare to people across Africa who cannot afford it. In the coming years, we look forward to breaking more ground and spreading these smiles across more faces of the under served in Nigeria.