Media practitioners grateful for health service

By Lydia Asamoah, GNA

Accra, Sept 10, GNA – Media practitioners in
Accra have lauded the Lordina Foundation and the Family Health Group for
creating a platform that allowed practitioners to undergo free medical
screening for various diseases.

According to the practitioners, for the
first time, members of the profession had gotten the opportunity to utilise a
one –stop medical exercise, which offered a comprehensive service to address
their health needs.

The free health screening was organised
under the theme: “Good Health Better Life, the Role of Media Practitioners in
National Building”. It was patronised by about 500, including some Osu
residents near the Independence Square, the venue for the exercise.

Media practitioners from the Ghana News
Agency, Ghanaian Times, Graphic Communications Group, UTV, Ghana Broadcasting
Corporation, Multimedia Group, TV Africa, the Ghana International Press
Centre  and many other media houses, both
private and state-owned, as well as some security officials benefited from the
exercise, on Friday.

The screening and treatment covered the eye
conditions, Blood Pressure, Blood sugar, HIV, breast and cervical cancer
examination, syphilis, malaria hepatitis ‘B’, among other illnesses.
Medications were also provided except for those that were out of stock for
which prescriptions were provided.  

Mrs Yaa Oforiwah Asare – Peasah, the News
Editor of the Ghana News Agency said: “I’m very impressed with what I have seen
today. In my 35 years of journalism practice, I have not seen such a thorough
medical outreach where practitioners can have access to such a holistic care
free of charge”.

“Usually, such exercises are carried out in
on a smaller scale to cover one  or two
health challenges but this one is being done on large scale for several
diseases whether communicable or non-communicable”.

Mrs Asare – Peasah, therefore, thanked the
Management of the Family Health Group, the Lordina Foundation and other
collaborators for “remembering Ghanaian journalists” and reaching out to them
at a time when journalists were preparing to cover a hectic exercise as the
General Election.

“On behalf of the Ghana Journalists
Association (GJA), the Ghana News Agency and all the journalists who benefitted
from the outreach, I want to say a big thank you to the organisers, especially
the medical team for their concern and the services provided,” Mrs Asare –
Peasah, a former National Treasurer of GJA, said. 

She, however, urged her colleagues to
regularly check their health status to ensure that they were healthy to go
through their hectic schedules for their own good and that of the nation.

Ms Regina Woode, a journalist with the
Amansan Television, described the health screening as “a good initiative
because most journalists rarely got the time to visit the hospital to seek for
medical assistance”.

Mr Kelvin Nana Osei, a cameraman with United
Television (UTV) said: “The health screening is okay since it will help us to
know about our health issues because most media practitioners hardly undergo
such screening.

“It should be done continuously for us, at
least once in a month.

Meanwhile, the First Lady in a speech read
on her behalf, by Dr Angela El-Adas, the Director General of the Ghana AIDS
Commission, described the work that journalists, editors, photojournalists and
the entire production crew do as “so demanding that it requires frequent check-ups
to ensure their healthy status.”

She said the health screening did not only
help identify health conditions but offered the opportunity for beneficiaries
to receive pieces of advice on how to take good care of themselves.

“We need you alive and healthy for mother
Ghana,” Mrs Mahama said.

Dr El-Adas commended the media for the
critical role they were playing to ensure that the citizens got the right
information about HIV and AIDs and other health care needs.

Mr Alex Segbefia, Minister of Health, said
the exercise had come at such a time in an election year, which meant more work
for journalists.

He said the media played a critical role in
national development, therefore, practitioners needed to ensure that they were
healthy at all times.

He said Government would continue with
efforts aimed at taking health care to the doorsteps of Ghanaians, with mobile
outreach specialists’ services for those in the hinterlands.

Professor Yao Kwawukume, the President of
the Family Health Group, said media practitioners often forgot to even take
care of themselves due to the nature of their work.

However, they faced a lot of stress as they
carried out their news gathering and sitting for long hours writing or editing
their stories.

He said his organisation, therefore, thought
it wise to collaborate with the Foundation as well as interested stakeholders
to screen journalists and to advise them on the need to take good care of

He gave the assurance that more of the
screening programmes would be rolled out for journalists in the regions and in
the hinterlands, as well.


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