A multi-stakeholder body of institutions responsible for the proper and sustainable management of mining operations within production forest reserves has presented "life-saving" maternal and neonatal healthcare equipment to the Bibiani and Sefwi Wiawso municipal hospitals.
The body known as the Liaison Group (LG) is under the auspices of the Environmental Protection Agency.
It also includes the Mineral's Commission, Water Resources Commission, the Ghana Chambers of Mines, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources and the Ghana Geological Survey Authority.
As part of activities of ensuring sustainable mining in the forest reserves, the group took a decision in 2014 to provide support to affected communities within the operational areas.
It uses part of its 0.5 per cent of contributions made by mining firms operating legally within the production forest for community development.
Sequel to that, a needs assessment was made and the items including infant swaddling tables, treatment trolleys, bedside lockers, wheelchairs and foetal doppler valued at GH₵180,000.00 were presented to the two hospitals in the Bibiani-Anhwiaso-Bekwai and Sefwi Wiawso municipality in the Western North Region.
The Executive Director of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Henry Kwabena Kokofu, said neonatal and maternal healthcare was critical in the health of any nation as well as it's economy.
"There is no reason why an expectant mother should suffer mortality when simple equipment could make a difference between saving a life and losing it," he said.
"Our babies are born to live, no matter how they emerge onto this earth," Mr Kokofu added.
The Executive Director said the drive has contributed to providing several amenities to many communities within the Bibiani-Anhwiaso-Bekwai municipality and Sefwi Wiawso.
They include the provision of classroom blocks, CHPS compound, palaces, markets, community centres and healthcare facilities.
"The provision of these facilities has improved the lives of the people in and around the beneficiary communities immensely, as the services they require have been brought close to their doorstep," he said.
The medical Superintendent for the Bibiani Government Hospital, Dr Akwasi Adu Gyamfi, Medical, and his colleagues from the Sefwi Wiawso Government Hospital, Dr Jonathan Mensah, expressed appreciation to the group.
They, however, asked for more of such equipment to stop the practice of referring mothers to the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) during moments of crisis.