Multimedia, KATH discuss ways to end maternal, neonatal deaths

Multimedia Group Limited has initiated discussions with the management of Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) in Kumasi to find short to medium term solutions to the maternal and neonatal deaths at the hospital.

This includes among others, a fundraising initiative to expand the maternity block, following the broadcast of Multimedia’s impact-driven documentary “Next to Die” which exposed dire challenges at the Mother & Baby Unit of the hospital.

Doctors and other stakeholders have called for the speedy completion of an abandoned 1000 bed capacity maternal block for the hospital.

On the average, about 100 women are dying on delivery beds at the KATH in Kumasi annually, while about four babies die each day.

Officials say the situation has reached a crisis level as women in labour are forced to join long queues.

The move is to temporarily bring an end the mortality rate of at least four baby deaths a day – until the imposing $70-million maternity block abandoned for over forty years is completed. 

The Komfo Anokye Management through, consultant, Architectural and Engineering Services Limited, AESL presented a plan to expand the existing maternity block at a cost of $ 2 million within 18 months.

The Chief Operating Officer for Multimedia Group Limited, Ekyi Quarm; Chief Finance Officer, Ransford Ashong, Manager Multimedia Group in Kumasi and his Marketing Manager, Isaac Antwi sought to know from KATH what immediate solutions could be provided to ease congestion at the maternity block.

Some newborn babies in an incubator

“Everything is about stopping the death or reducing them to the barest minimum. I see the hospital being expanded but I don’t think we would get support from the public if we don’t immediately focus on stopping the deaths,” Mr Quarm said. 

Other Management members of the Hospital offered suggestions on the way forward. 

“The bottom line is to get the place completed, so I think we continue to hammer that home so that people will get to know the reality on the ground.

“It should be clear that it will improve the quality of life for both working and teaching as this is a teaching hospital,” one member said. 

“I think we should look at ways of balancing these things as these and see ways we can move forward otherwise we would be spending some money on an area that is temporary while the main project is there. 

“Otherwise in two years we will be back to square one and we have not solved anything,” another member said. 

The meeting ended on the note that the temporal plan should be revised for multimedia to engage stakeholders on a fundraising venture.

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