The Ghana Medical Association (GMA), has expressed reservations with the Ghana Health Service’s response to the recent outcry over the no-beds syndrome.
The Ghana Health Service has among other things, directed hospitals nationwide to treat emergency cases even when there are no beds.But these measures “will not be successful” without a more holistic approach to the country’s health challenges, the President of the GMA, Dr. Frank Ankobea, has said.
A doctor and MP for the Ledzokuku Constituency, Dr. Okoe Boye, has also expressed some reservations with the directive.
Among the GMA’s concerns, Dr. Ankobea said the Association was not even consulted by the GHS.
“We are on the ground. We know certain things. I think we need to dialogue with the Ghana Health Service and the Minister.”
But he said he expected doctors to adhere to the directive.
“We have been trying. We have always been trying in the circumstances and limited facilities that we have and we will continue,” he said on the Citi Breakfast Show.
“We will try but as to whether it will be effective or be successful is another thing,” Dr. Ankobea added.
He explained that the handling of emergency cases went beyond the availability of beds.
Some emergency cases might require ventilators and other equipment that might not be available, he noted.
“We should look at it holistically. There are other factors that must come into play for this thing to be successful,” Dr. Ankobea said.
The GHS’ directive followed the death of a 70-year-old man, Prince Anthony Opoku-Acheampong, who died after seven hospitals turned him away over claims that there were no beds.
The directive from the GHS also said hospitals and clinics should make every effort to stabilize the patients before referring them to the next level facilities.
An official communication sighted by the Daily Graphic was dispatched by the GHS to all regional and district directorates of health to enforce the directive.
However, there is a sense that the Ministry of Health does not seem to have a clear strategy to deal with the matter.
The Public Relations Officer (PRO) for the Ministry of Health, Robert Cudjoe, said on Citi TV’s The Point of View that the ministry has been advising hospitals to desist from the practice.
“We keep talking, and whoever is found culpable is punished. It’s a behavioural matter,” he said.
By: Delali Adogla-Bessa/citinewsroom.com/Ghana
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