Politics of Sunday, 11 January 2015
Source: The Republic
The John Dramani Mahama administration has released an extensive list of massive development projects currently being undertaken in the country’s health sector.
The projects valued at over US$ 3 billion includes over 17 hospitals and mini health centres that covers virtually every district and major urban area in the country.
The Republic newspaper can confirm that the list had been prompted by criticisms that nothing is being done by the Mahama administration to address health sector challenges in the country.
“Government is addressing the healthcare needs of our people in an aggressive fashion. The infrastructure, equipment and personnel needs on the sector are all receiving urgent attention. As far as infrastructure is concerned, the following projects have been embarked upon to expand access to health care in all parts of the country,” a reliable sources within the government told this paper.
Below are some of the projects:
ACHIEVEMENTS IN HEALTH SECTOR
Government is addressing the healthcare needs of our people in an aggressive fashion. The infrastructure, equipment and personnel needs on the sector are all receiving urgent attention. As far as infrastructure is concerned, the following projects have been embarked upon to expand access to health care in all parts of the country.
- The 617-bed University of Ghana Teaching Hospital (US$ 184 Million)
- The 420-bed Ridge Hospital Expansion Project (US$ 250 million)
- The 500-bed Military Hospital Project in Kumasi (US$ 180 million)
- The Second phase of the Tamale Teaching Hospital after the completion of the 400-bed first phase of the project. This would add 400 more beds to make it an 800 bed facility (38 million euros)
- The 104 bed Police Hospital Project (47 million pounds)
- The 250 bed Ashanti Regional Hospital at Sewua-Kumasi (Part of Euroget US$339 million)
- The 160 Upper West Regional Hospital (Part of Euroget US$339 million)
- The 130 bed Maritime Hospital, Tema (GHC46 million)
- The 295 bed Bolgatanga Regional Hospital (US$48 million)
- The 7 District Hospital project by NMS each with 120 bed capacity (Dodowa, Fomena, Kumawu, Secondi, Takoradi -US$ 175 million)
- Euroget six district hospital project each with 60 bed capacity (Tepa, Nsawkaw, Konongo, Madina, Salaga and Twifo Praso all part of Euroget –US$ 339 million)
Other projects aimed at expanding access that have been completed include;
- Winneba District Hospital
- Construction of a 100-bed General Hospital with Malaria Research Centre at Teshie, Accra
- Phase 2 of the Rehabilitation and Upgrading of Bolgatanga Regional Hospital;
- Construction of five (5) Polyclinics/Health Centres in the Northern Region
- Kpandai, Tatale, Janga, Chereponi, and Karaga
- Construction of 5 Polyclinics (Phase III) in the Brong Ahafo Region Nkrankwanta Wamfie Kwatire Tachimantia Bomaa
- Construction of 5 Polyclinics (Phase II) in the Upper West Region at Wechau, Babile, Lambussie, Ko, Hain.
- Nineteen out of the twenty-one Health Centres with OPEC funding at the following locations;
- Three District Hospitals under the same project have also been completed
- Construction of eye care centre at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital
Amasaman, Doffor, Pokukrom, New Jejeti, Paakro, Gwollu, Funsi, Sang, Northern Buipe, Manso Nkwanta, Abuakwa, Mase Sosekpe, Kedzi, Adamso, Kayoro, Timonde, Bonsu Nkwanta, Dadieso
Edjumako, Essam, Zagzugu, Northern Region
Ladies and Gentlemen of the media, government also has a program of providing modern hospital equipment to enhance healthcare delivery. Christened the National Hospital Equipment Replacement Program, this US$ 267 million initiative has ensured the construction and equipping of New MRI and CT Scan Centres in all Teaching Hospitals in Ghana (Komfo Anokye Teaching, Hospital and the Tamale Teaching Hospital and Korle Bu)
The Korle Bu Teaching Hospital alone benefited from a $57 Million project to replace and rehabilitate obsolete equipment and theatres. Twelve operating theatres for Pediatric and General Surgery (which had been closed for close to eight years), the Neonatal Intensive care Unit and the Baby Unit were refurbished.
Korle Bu also took delivery of Mammography, MRI and CT Scan X-ray equipment as well as Oxygen plants.
Under the same scheme, procurement and installation of new X-Ray Equipment in 65 selected District Hospitals took place nationwide; these include,
- St. Peters Hospital, Jacobu-Ashanti Region
- Mankranso District Hospital, Ashanti Region
- St. Patrick Hospital, Offinso-Ashanti Region
- Atebubu District Hospital, Brong Ahafo Region
- Dormaa Municipal Hospital, Brong Ahafo Region
- Holy Family Hospital, Duayaw Nkwanta- Brong Ahafo Region
- Abura District Hospital, Central Region
- Ajumako District Hospital, Central Region
- Assin North Municipal Hospital, Central Region
- Mfantsiman Municipal Hospital, Central Region
- St. Martins Hospital, Eastern Region
- Enyiresi District Hospital, Eastern Region
- Weija Hospital, Greater Accra Region
- Maamobi Polyclinic, Greater Accra Region
- Pantang Psychiatry, Greater Accra Region
- St Joseph Hospital, Nkwanta, Volta Region
- Adidome Hospital, Volta Region
- Dodi Papasi Hospital, Volta Region
- Jasikan Government Hospital, Volta Region
- Zebilla District Hospital, Upper East Region
- Bongo District Hospital, Upper East Region
- Lawra District Hospital, Upper West Region
- St. Theresa Hospital, Nandom, Upper West Region.
Contrary to claims in sections of society that the National Health Insurance Scheme has collapsed, the NHIS continues to grow impressively. Available data indicates that last year, out-patient utilization of the NHIS rose to 27. 4 million from 16.6 million in 2009 and 597 thousand in 2005.
This is the number of visits made to health facilities in the respective years on the account of the NHIS for only outpatient cases. This is positive because people now visit the hospitals often for their healthcare needs and therefore reflects the improved health seeking behaviour and outcomes of our people,
The NHIA paid 748 million Ghana cedis in claims in 2013, compared to 362 million cedis and 7.6million cedis in 2009 and 2005 respectively. The trend must be checked at some
Even though, the growing utilization of services under the Scheme stretches the financial status of the policy, government deems is important to continue to provide social protection for our people, especially those who need it.
In other to strengthen the structures of the NHIS, incremental reforms are being carried out to position it to respond to the ever growing needs of the Ghanaian population. These include;
The establishment of new Claims Processing Centres across the Country In 2010, the Claims Processing Centre (CPC) was established in Accra. In 2013, the CPC model was rolled out to Tamale, Cape Coast and Kumasi. The centre in Accra takes care of claims from Greater Accra, Volta and Eastern Regions, whilst CPC Tamale manages claims from the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions. The Claims Processing Center in Kumasi processes claims from Ashanti and Brong Ahafo Regions, and CPC Cape Coast takes care of Central and Western Regions.
Electronic submission of claims (e-Claims) has been introduced by the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), to deal with the logistical challenges associated with paper claims management. It is intended to boost efficiency in claims management, reduce cost of submission for providers, reduce cost of processing for the NHIA, and expedite the claims payment process, among other things. The piloting of e-Claims began in April 2013.
Currently, 43 service providers are at various stages of submitting claims electronically.
As part of efforts to extend coverage to as many vulnerable groups as possible the NHIS as a social protection scheme and that recognizes government’s responsibility to provide financial protection against the cost of basic healthcare has initiated some programs to cover the vulnerable in society. Currently, persons under 18years, pregnant women, LEAP beneficiaries, the aged, indigents, people in special homes such as the leprosaria and mental health homes constitute the exempt group under the scheme, they therefore do not pay premium.
Last year, 1.2million poor and indigent people across the country were registered for free. This compares to 393,000 the previous year.
The Ministry of Health through the NHIA is collaborating with the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection to register 10,000 aged people in Greater Accra, Central and Eastern regions. This exercise will be extended to other parts of the country. So far, the aged in La, Chorkor, Akoto Lante, Madina, Teshie, Ashaiman, Nima and Nungua have been registered onto the NHIS for free under this program and more remains to be done.