Tamale Teaching Hospital launches 50th anniversary
The Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH), the first premier tertiary healthcare facility in the Northern part of the country, has hit a landmark of fifty years of existence and operations.
Established in 1974 by the then Head of State, Lt. Col. General Kutu Acheampong, the TTH, which was formerly known as the Tamale General Hospital, was to serve the healthcare needs of the people of Tamale and Northern Ghana at large.
However, the hospital, after its establishment, faced numerous challenges, including the lack of doctors, due to the unwillingness of trained doctors from medical schools to accept postings to the north.
To find a permanent solution to the situation in the Tamale General Hospital, the School of Medicine and Health Sciences of the University for Development Studies (UDS-SMHS) was established.
Fast forward to 2005, the hospital was upgraded to the status of a teaching hospital, making it the third teaching hospital in the country.
Aside from rendering tertiary health care services, the upgrade was also to help with the training of health professionals from UDS-SMHS.
Currently, the once 400-bed capacity hospital has now grown into a status of 812-bed capacity, with a staff workforce of 3,073, offering a comprehensive wide range of specialised services.
To celebrate its successes and take stock of the challenges confronting the facility, the TTH has launched its 50th-anniversary celebration.
The event was attended by a cross-section of current staff, board members, former chief executives, retirees and various stakeholders.
On the theme "TTH@50.
Changing the Narrative: Repositioning for Excellence", the event was used to outline a series of activities that have been planned to mark the year-long celebrations.
Among the activities are a health walk, medical outreach, public forum, fundraising, awards night, fun games and blood donation.
Speaking at the launch of the 50th-anniversary celebration of the facility in Tamale, the Chief Executive Officer of the TTH, Dr Adam Atiku, said since the hospital’s upgrade into a tertiary health facility, it had seen major significant transformations, especially in the areas of infrastructure and human resource development, through the continued support of successive governments and partners.
“Conspicuous among these have been the completion of Phases I and II of the hospital’s expansion and upgrading project works, which saw the renovation of the old hospital structure and the construction of new state-of-the-art service areas such as the Accident & Emergency, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Internal Medicine and Pathology Blocks, among others,” he noted.
“It is important to put on record that the Tamale Teaching Hospital can attend to about 120,000 out-patients and 20,000 in-patients annually.
The facility also conducts nearly 8,000 deliveries every year," he noted.
Highlighting the successes of the facility, Dr Atiku said the hospital provides specialised services such as endoscopy and dialysis, neurology and neurosurgical, cardiology, endocrinology and oncology and paediatric oncology services.
Other services included dental care, drugs and pharmaceuticals, oxygen supply, trauma and orthopaedics, infectious disease care and diagnostics, including blood services, CT-scan, ultrasound scan, echocardiography and speech therapy.
Touching on the challenges, he said the frequent breakdown of essential equipment such as the CT scan, inadequate recovery of costs for services provided, leading to the perennial shortages of consumables as well as the erratic supply of water and electricity to the hospital, were hampering health care delivery.
“The critical lack of space for key service areas such as Paediatrics & Child Health and Mental Health services, as well as the unavailability of services and equipment such as an MRI machine, mammograms, fluoroscopy machines, a CathLab and radio-oncology services, have left yawning gaps in the services the hospital is expected to provide as a tertiary facility,” he said.
For his part, the Deputy Minister for Health and Member of Parliament for Daboya, Mahama Asei Seini, said that the TTH's contribution towards healthcare delivery in the country was remarkable.
“As we commemorate this historic achievement, it is crucial to recognise the dedication and hard work of the physicians, nurses and entire staff who have given their best to offer patients compassionate care.
Your altruism and steadfast dedication to the community's wellbeing are genuinely admirable,” he noted.
The Northern Regional Minister, Shani Alhassan Shaibu, called on development partners and stakeholders, including corporate bodies and benevolent and patriotic individuals, to collaborate to support the healthcare needs of the people.
The Overlord of Dagbon, Ya-Na in a speech read on his behalf by the Chief of Zangbalun, Naa Dr Jacob Mahama, commended the staff of the hospital for all the sacrifices and toils they have made over the years in keeping the hospital going.