The only ambulance at the Hospital, donated by Dr Bernice Heloo Adiku, Member of Parliament (MP) for the area is in a bad state, affecting referral system at the facility.
Mr Kingsley Freelove Amu, co-chair of Gbidukorza Steering Committee, said the gesture by Gbidukor’s was to seek the welfare of its people, in line with the theme for this year’s Gbidukor Festival “promoting health and safety standards-our shared responsibility”.
He said there was “a deepening uncomfortable awareness that though accidents and emergencies occur daily…it is disheartening that a major hospital such as ours has no functioning ambulance”.
Mr Amu commended the MP for her benevolence in supporting the facility with the vehicle, but added that more needs to be done and urged government to, as a matter of urgency, provide the hospital with an ambulance for improved health delivery.
Nana Bulley Osei VII, Chairman, Hohoe Ambulance Fund Committee, said in 2017, the Committee initiated a mutual fund for ambulance services with the contribution of GHC1 charged on attendance at the government hospital and other health cantres to tackle the myriad of financial challenges bedevilling the ambulance service.
He said the initiative, however, had been put on hold following “a directive for the stoppage of the collection of the money at the hospital”, and called for a broader stakeholder engagement to take a second look at it.
Dr. Pius Mensah, Medical Superintendent of the Hospital said several challenges, including delays in accessing services from other hospitals, were exacerbated by the absence of ambulance services, which in some cases led to fatalities.
He said patients, most of whom were peasant farmers and petty traders also incurred debts, as they were not able to afford the fees of the services rendered to them, adding that, the Hospital was forced to defray the debts using its internally generated fund.
Dr. Mensah appealed for support from stakeholders and benevolent organizations to revive the Ambulance services and save lives.
This year’s Gbidukorza will take place at Peki, in the South Dayi District of the Volta Region, in the first week of December.
It will coincide with the establishment of a Trauma Centre at the Peki Government Hospital to cater for accidents and other emergencies.
Gbidukorza is a unique festival, which involves movement of people from one traditional area to another where they lodge for days for the festival.
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