Upper East improves upon health delivery

Bolgatanga, March 2, GNA – The Upper East Region continues to stand tall among the 10 regions when it comes to health service delivery as it has been adjudged the best and highest performing region in the 2012 and 2013.

The Upper East Regional Director of Ghana Health Service, Dr John Koku Awoonor-Williams, said this when he spoke at the 2014 Annual Regional Health Sector Performance Review Meeting held in Bolgatanga.

He said the Regional HIV prevalence rate had reduced from 2.1 per cent to 1.7 per cent in 2013 making the Sandema Hospital Anti Retrovirus Treatment (ART) Clinic the second best in Ghana with 90 per cent of HIV clients’ retention and the Bawku Presbyterian ATR Hospital the fifth with 89 per cent.

‘Indeed the Upper East Region and the Central Region were the only two regions in Ghana that obtained 100 per cent in HIV prescribing practice,’ he said.

Dr Awoonor-Williams said TB treatment success rate over the past years had stagnated between 89 per cent and 88 per cent and this called for new and innovative strategies to help increase the coverage.

In the area of OPD attendance, he said for the first time in two years the OPD cases decreased from 2.0 per cent in 2012 to 1.8 per cent in 2014 including a decrease in hospital admission.

He attributed the success partly to the reduction in malaria cases as a result of the introduction of numerous interventions including indoor residual spraying, continuous distribution of the long lasted Insecticide Nets as well as clinicians adhering to the new malaria anti-drug policy of conforming malaria cases before diagnosing and the supply of RDTs to test malaria throughout the year 2014.

Under – five malaria case fatality rate, he said, had reduced over the past three years from 0.6 per cent in 2012 to 0.4 in 2014 and lauded the Bongo District for not recording any under-five death for the period under review.

On supervised delivery, the Regional Director said the region had the highest coverage in the country and applauded the staff particularly midwives and Community Health Nurses.

On the issue of communicable diseases, he said there were eight confirmed cases of anthrax with five deaths in 2014 in Talensi and the Bawku West districts.

Dr Awoonor-Williams said the Region recorded 289 cases of cholera with nine deaths as against the 147 cases with three deaths in 2012.

He said despite all the interventions mapped out in 2014 to contain the outbreak of meningitis in the Region, it recorded 87 cases with seven deaths as against 135 cases with 21 deaths in 2013 and 512 cases in 2012 with 49 deaths.

‘Ironical, so many lives are being lost to CSM compared to maternal deaths. We must do more in surveillance to avoid such outbreak and its effects on human populations,’ he said.


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