Komfo Anokye reels under huge utility bills


Dr Joseph Akpaloo
Kumasi, March 12, GNA – Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH), the nation’s second largest referral facility, has expressed deep worry over rising utility bills, something that is putting severe strain on its finances.

Things are not being helped by the current energy crisis, a situation that has forced it to spend GH¢ 141,000 to buy fuel to power its four stand-by generators.

Dr. Joseph Akpaloo, the Chief Executive, told an annual performance review meeting that an average of GH¢ 299,000, was paid in electricity bills every month.

He said this combined with chronic delay in insurance claim payments by the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), was presenting financial difficulties.

Dr Akpaloo said in the light of this, the management was now encouraging all the units and directorates to ‘make conscious efforts to secure donations and partnerships from philanthropists and corporate organizations to help improve on their operations’.

Besides, it was exploring the possibility of securing joint partnership arrangements under the government’s public private partnership (PPP) policy for the development of critically needed facilities.

He said notwithstanding the challenges, some significant achievements were made in year 2014, citing the reduction in maternal deaths to 108 from the previous year’s total of 126.

Dr Akpaloo attributed the progress to the establishment of a six-bed mini intensive care unit at the obstetrics and gynaecology directorate and the attachment of specialists and consultants from the hospital to some leading peripheral facilities in Ashanti, Brong-Ahafo, Eastern, Central and the Western regions.

He said KATH would continue to encourage timely reporting of pregnant women to the hospitals and prompt referral of complicated cases to help bring down the high maternal mortality rate.

Dr. Akpaloo again spoke of the procurement of essential and vital resources for effective service delivery, completion of a police post at the cost of GH¢ 28,494 to improve security of staff and property and renovation of the Ear, Nose and Throat Directorate at GH¢107,410. Under a build, operate and transfer (BOT) arrangement, contract had been awarded for the construction of a 131-bed hostel to provide comfortable and safe accommodation for visiting patients’ relatives and he gave the contract sum as GH¢ 848,000.

Dr. Ken Sagoe, the Board Chairman, commended the management and staff for their hard work and dedication amid challenging working conditions and pledged to help address the challenges.

GNA


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