The University of Ghana Medical Centre has begun operations at the Outpatients Department (OPD) and the Mother and Child Unit, the Minister of Health, Mr. Kwaku Agyemang-Manu, has said.
He said the ministry had also started accessing funds to procure medicines and other items for the hospital.
At a press briefing in Accra yesterday on the state of health infrastructure in the country, the minister said the medical centre was being operated in phases. ”You cannot operationalise all the divisions of the hospital at the same time since it will create a chaotic situation,” he explained. Mr. Agyemang-Manu said an interim management committee (IMC) was running the facility.
He said the government had given financial clearance for the recruitment of 2,000 health workers into the system and that the recruitment process had already started. He said contrary to assertions in certain quarters that the government had abandoned a number of health projects started by the previous government, the delay in continuing with some of the projects should be attributed to a former Minister of Finance, Mr. Seth Terkper.
Mr. Agyemang-Manu said before contractors could access funds to work on projects, the Finance Minister had to sign letters of credit to enable them to source for funding, alleging that Mr. Terkper refused to sign the letters of credit, for which reason most of the projects were stalled.
He said the government inherited 10 uncompleted polyclinic projects in the Central Region, located at Potsin, Bimpong Egya, Etsil Sunkwa, Ekumfi Naakwa, Dawurampong, Mankorong, Biriwa, and Bisease, all of which had been completed and were operational. Besides, he said, five polyclinics at Ashaiman, Bortianor, Sege, Adenta, and Oduman, all in the Greater Accra Region, had also been completed and inaugurated on May 2019.
On ongoing projects, the minister said construction works on five district hospitals in Salaga, Wheta, Somanya, Buipe, and Tolon, including a polyclinic at Bamboi, were currently at various levels of completion. He said under an Euroget project, the Wa Regional Hospital had been inaugurated, while preparations towards the operationalisation of the Ga East Hospital at Kwabenya were scheduled for completion in October this year, with the Nkawkaw and the Tepa hospitals expected to be completed by June 2020.
Mr. Agyemang-Manu said the remaining four Euroget projects situated at Twifo Praso, Konongo, Sewua and Salaga were all scheduled for completion in November 2020. “With the design, construction and equipping of seven district hospitals and integrated IT systems in Ghana (NMS), the programme, which was scheduled for completion in December 2016, was suspended and progress of work across all sites currently stands at 50.51 percent,” he said.
He added that issues that led to the suspension of work on the seven projects at Dodowa, Abetifi, Kumawu, Takoradi European (Housing), Sekondi (Kansaworodo), Garu and Fomena had been resolved, and that the contractors were preparing to resume work by the end of October 2019. He said the Dodowa project was almost completed, but works on the Kumawu, Fomena and Takoradi projects were scheduled for completion by June 2020, while the remaining hospitals in Sekondi, Garu and Abetifi were scheduled for completion by 2021.
Mr Agyemang-Manu said 15 Community-based Health Planning and Services (CHPS) compounds were at various levels of completion, with eight scheduled for completion by December 2019, while work on 26 more would commence by January 2020.