Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah (3rd from right), Western Regional Minister; Dr Yaw Ofori Yeboah (3rd from left),  Regional Director, GHS; Obrempong Hima Dekyi XIV (2nd from right), Paramount Chief of Upper Dixcove, and Nana Kofi Abuna V (left), Chief of Essipon, and other invited guests after the meeting
Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah (3rd from right), Western Regional Minister; Dr Yaw Ofori Yeboah (3rd from left), Regional Director, GHS; Obrempong Hima Dekyi XIV (2nd from right), Paramount Chief of Upper Dixcove, and Nana Kofi Abuna V (left), Chief of Essipon, and other invited guests after the meeting

All Western Region hospital projects will be completed - Darko-Mensah assures

The Western Regional Minister, Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, has assured the health sector that all hospital projects in the region will be completed for more comprehensive healthcare delivery. 

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He said considering the importance of healthcare, the government had kept faith with the people by initiating a number of much-needed health infrastructure and would mobilise resources to complete all the projects on time.

These ongoing projects include the Agenda 111 and other projects with the development partners meant to ensure the region gets its fair share of health facilities.

Speaking at the 2022 Annual Performance Review Meeting of the Western Regional Health Directorate in Takoradi, which was on the theme “Accountability: A Key to Achieving Quality Healthcare”, Mr Darko-Mensah said the region, for some time now, had seen the completion of many healthcare and residential facilities for health staff.

He said it was, therefore, imperative to encourage all health staff to play their respective roles by being accountable to any role or responsibility assigned to them, “whether at the health sector  —hospitals or our offices/directorates, to pursue a common agenda.” 

Improved service 

Mr Darko-Mensah said the call for accountability and improved service should not be limited to only the health sector. “Instead, it is on the entire Ghanaian society; if we heed to answerability, either by helping in the creation of wealth or by reducing waste in the utilisation of our national resources.

“Above all, we must, as concerned citizens, eschew corruption, favouritism and create transparency for accountability when the need be, in the phase of achieving quality health care,” he said.

“We have, so far, seen the completion of five polyclinics at Elubo, Wassa Dunkwa, Bogoso, Nsuaem and Mpohor, Ghana Health Service (GHS) staff housing unit at Takoradi hospital, an infectious disease centre for the Effia-Nkwanta Regional Hospital, which is the testament of government’s commitment,” he said.

Aside from that, he said work was progressing on the construction of a regional hospital at Apemanim, as well as the transformation of the Effia-Nkwanta Referral Regional Hospital to a teaching hospital in the shortest possible time.

He said the redevelopment of the Effia-Nkwanta Regional Hospital into a teaching hospital was in addition to “other works on numerous Agenda 111 hospitals in the region, which are at various stages of completion.

“Let me say, now, that these are clear indicators of the government’s commitment to expanding access to all levels of healthcare to the people of the Western Region.”  

Health tourism 

Mr Darko-Mensah emphasised that the government, through the Ministry of Health and partners, would continue to support the health sector with the necessary backing, not only to scale up the quality of health services, but also to position the country as a major destination for health tourism within the sub-region.

The minister urged health practitioners to lead in the crusade for quality healthcare services and improved service delivery as the health workers’ identifiable contribution to ensuring accountability.

The Director-General of the Ghana Health Service, Dr Patrick Kuma- Aboagye, in a speech read on his behalf by the Director of the Health Administration and Support Services (HASS), Dr Ebo Hammond, said the performance reviews demonstrated the willingness of the service to hold itself accountable to its teeming stakeholders. 

He said reviews enabled the service to measure its achievements against set targets defined under the strategic objectives of the Health Sector Medium Term Development Plan and the programme of work for the year under review.

Improved interactions 

Over the years, Dr Kuma-Aboagye said, the review process had contributed towards improving interaction between the service and its stakeholders, thereby facilitating information sharing and providing its stakeholders with the opportunity to hear first-hand from budget management centres (BMC) their achievements and challenges.  

Touching on the highlights of service delivery in 2022, he said the service’s performance had been significant and that “we have seen decreases in institutional Infant Mortality, Neonatal mortality and under-5 mortality rates.”

He said similarly, the institutional maternal mortality ratio decreased from 111 to 102 per 100,000 live births, reducing maternal deaths from 875 to 809. “Again, family planning acceptor rate had increased, as haemoglobin check at registration or booking visit improved,” he stated.

He said the sector had also seen consistent improvement in children under five years receiving Vitamin A, as well as babies benefitting from early initiation of breastfeeding, and commended the sector to ensure consolidation of the gains at the face of all challenges. 

The Western Regional Director of the Ghana Health Service, Dr Yaw Ofori Yeboah, commended workers for their commitment to duty leading to the success stories, saying there was the need for more.

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Some workers who performed well, as well as those in the hard-to-reach areas and individuals who made significant contribution to the development and improvement of the health sectors, were awarded.

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