Danger! KATH Turns Away Women In Labour

The Labour Ward of the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) was yesterday closed to new admissions.That was because staff of the ward failed to report for duty following a mob attack on some members of staff of the Obstetrics and Gynaecology Department of the hospital by some irate Zongo youth last Thursday.

Consequently, all those who reported to the hospital for delivery were redirected to nearby health facilities.

The personnel of the department said they feared for their lives because of what they described as inadequate security at the hospital.

Last Thursday, a group of young men and women numbering about 50 and believed to be sympathisers of a 36-year-old mother who gave birth to a stillborn baby but could later not find its body stormed the Labour and the Maternity wards of the hospital.

They assaulted the medical staff on duty and vandalised some property belonging to the hospital while shouting that they wanted the corpse of the baby.

When the Daily Graphic visited the Labour Ward yesterday, those present were the security and health staff who were attending to those on admission.

Two police vehicles were stationed at the frontage of the main building housing the Labour and the Maternity wards.

The Labour Ward was, however, bereft of any activity, as the staff there who had borne the brunt of the mob attack the previous day, refused to turn up for work.

A memo to the staff, a copy which the Daily Graphic has seen, said the management had arranged with the Ashanti Regional Police Command for more personnel, both uniformed and plainclothes, to be stationed at the hospital.

It stated that the “regional command has beefed its security presence at the hospital with the posting of uniformed and plain-clothes policemen at vantage points at the hospital”.

According to the memo, the measure was to forestall the recurrence of attacks on the staff of the Obstetrics and Gynaecology Department and implored all staff to wear their staff ID cards, “since they may be stopped for security checks”.

It assured the staff that every effort was being made to provide a sound and safe working environment for them to go about their duties without hindrance.

The Head of the Public Relations Unit of the hospital, Mr Kwame Frimpong, said management was hopeful that with the new security arrangement in place, the staff would turn up for work today.

He said management had met with the staff and their heads and assured them that adequate security measures had been put in place to ensure their safety.