Former Head of Child Health donates to KBTH
A former Head of the Child Health Department of the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Professor Janet Neequaye, has donated proceeds from the sale of her published autobiography to the hospital.
The proceeds and subsequent ones will go to the Needy Children Fund (NCF) which she established while she was the head of the department to cater for children who are unable to pay for drugs and medical bills which are not available on the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
The 199-page book with a photo gallery and an index talks about Prof. Mrs Neequaye’s life and career as a doctor, teacher and mother in England, Saudi Arabia and Ghana, where she lived on and off over the past 50 years.
The book, titled “Through Thick and Thin”, illustrates the trials and triumphs of her life, stretching from 1946 to the present, starting at her birthplace in the provincial town of Benfleet, Southern Essex in England, and still ongoing in Accra.
Some chapters in the book have titles such as: Life Today, My Family, Medical School, Marriage and Early Working Life, and Going to Ghana, among others.
During her stay as the head of the department, Prof. Mrs Neequaye, an English paediatrician married to a Ghanaian, said she embarked on several research projects to aid in child health.
“I did a lot of research in Malaria, HIV and Burkitt’s lymphoma which is a childhood cancer.
I also did some administrative projects such as the NFC for the benefit of sick children”, she stated.
She explained that she created “Dear Pharmacist” to help children obtain emergency life-saving drugs, as at the time, it was “cash and carry”.
“I also started something called Dear Pharmacist, so that if you rush to the child health department with your very sick child and you don't have money, the doctor can write in your folder, dear pharmacist, please supply this emergency drug.
So they give it immediately to save the child's life and then later the money is paid”, she added.
A former Headmistress of Ghana International School, Judith Sawyer, who reviewed the book, said the book would inspire, encourage and assist, particularly, female readers in their struggle to gain recognition in their career lives.
“In England, Prof. Neequaye was rejected for a medical position because the interviewer suggested that she would find it difficult to cope with a young child while practising.
In Ghana, she had to work doubly hard to gain promotion in the Medical School by publishing more scientific articles than would normally be required”, she stated.
Prof. Janet Neequaye, a retired paediatrician, is married to Prof. Alfred Neequaye, a Ghanaian physician specialist, who was her classmate at St George’s Medical School in London.
She has written 17 research works on Malaria, HIV and Burkitt’s lymphoma.