TMA Responds to Sixteen Maternal Deaths At General Hospital

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The Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA), has started putting up a 40-bed “emergency” Maternity Ward to cater for pregnant women, following the death of 16 women at the Tema General Hospital in the first quarter of the year.

The Assembly, led by it boss, Isaac Ashia Odamtten, has also completed the building of a 2000 capacity morgue on the premises of the same hospital to replace, the old morgue built in 1954 with only two fridges, which was in the news in the past, because of it limited capacity, leading to authorities almost admitting dead bodies on bare floors.

Over the period, the hospital, located at a very strategic area within the Greater Accra Region, serving towns such as Ada, Dodowa, Ashaiman etc, has been overwhelmed with the number of people who come to the facility to seek for medical care, stretching it limited facility to a level that pushed authorities to call for external support to enable them discharge their mandates well.

Unfortunately, sixteen women, died due to pregnancy complications at the hospital between January and April, this year, due to the deplorable condition there.

Mr. Odamtten, the Municipal Chief Executive Officer (MCE) of the TMA, described the construction of the maternity ward with a theatre for the Tema General Hospital as an emergency programme which, “must be provided speedily to curb the incident of maternal mortality in Tema”.

He added that it is “sad to note that by the end of first quarter, we had lost sixteen women to maternal deaths and this does not augur well for a region that is in full support for CARMMA, acronym for Campaign for Accelerated Reduction in Maternal Mortality in Africa (CARMMA)”.

The TMA boss asked, “that campaign must be sustained because no woman must die in the course of given life. Why should you die when you are going to give life? This is why the Assembly has moved in to support the General Hospital to curb the incident of maternal mortality”.

“Sad to say that the Tema General Hospital is not blessed with a good morgue, we do not pray that people die but it is part of life that this facility must is provided and as we speak now, the facility is 100 percent complete and it is just waiting for the installation of fridges from the Ministry of Health”, Mr. Odamtten said.

The Director of the Tema General Hospital, Dr Opoku Edusei, disclosed to the media that due to the lack of enough infrastructure and logistics, the maternity was overcrowded.

He said, instead of lying on beds, women sit in chairs during labour, contributing to the high maternal mortality and stillbirths recorded at the hospital.

Briefing the media after a tour of some of the many projects being executed by the Assembly, a sad-looking Mr. Odamtten, said the maternity ward project, which started few weeks ago, was on course, and would be completed on schedule.

“That is a project we have taken under our emergency scheme. When we got the first quarter review indeed, in April, 16 people had lost their lives, so we had an emergency meeting with the General Hospital and the Assembly and the Consultant.

He added, there is another 3-storey building under construction for the same hospital.

The tour, was under the auspices of the Greater Accra Regional National Democratic Congress (NDC), which is on a mission to showcase the many projects being undertaken by the various assemblies within the region.

The Metropolitan Engineer, Sam Okantey and other officials of the Assembly were part of the tour. The media team, inspected other completed projects, as well as on-going ones all aimed at improving the living conditions of the residents of the metropolis.

They range from schools, CHIPS Compounds clinics, roads, markets stores, drains etc.

At Bankuman, an area within the Tema East Constituency, the team inspected the construction of a drain, which is nearing completion and then moved to Tema Manhean precisely at Adjei Kojo, where a CHIPS Compound initiated by the Assembly, has been completed.

There are three of these CHIPS Compound being executed across the metropolis to facilitate good healthcare delivery in the communities that are deprived.

The team then moved to a 17-units market stores at Tema Manhean, funded with an Urban Development Grant (UDG) a World Bank facility, which was 80 percent complete.

At Abomoso in Tema New Town, the team inspected a three-storey 12-unit classroom block with auxiliary facilities such as library, computer laboratory, modern place of convenience, conference room and it is for the pupils of Anglican Cluster of Schools.

A similar project the team noticed, is being constructed at Community One, at Oninku with funding from UDG. The schools are termed Industrial City Basic Schools and it is designed not to take less than thousand pupils. At the first phase, the Assembly is constructing three of such schools to enhance teaching and learning.

The Project Engineer, Vincent Myles-Abadoo, told the media team that the project which is 70 percent complete, would be ready before the August 2015 schedule date, adding they have “no problem with money” as the Assembly is providing the funding.

“We would change the face of education in Tema to support the Better Ghana Agenda. We are talking about holistic education, so in Industrial City Basic Schools, we are providing improved infrastructure that is why we are going high rise.

Each school would be groomed with infrastructure to support a minimum of one thousand pupils but the target is to have five thousand school children in a school community setting with all infrastructure and services to support quality education provided. We would deliver this with talent and skills in mind,” Mr. Adamtten said.

On roads, the team visited a 11-kilometre rehabilitation project at Tema West. The project being executed by constructing firm, Mawums, starts from Devtraco Estate to Coca Cola Roundabout.

The MCE, mentioned other road projects that have already being completed, as the Tesie-Nungua Beach, starting from Nungua Barrier to Sakumono Village, Valco to TOR, the General Hospital and the Tema High School road from Motorway Roundabout to Community 12 etc.

“Even in the midst of the challenges, we can boast of massive road infrastructure in Tema”, he said.

The metropolis, has also been provided with five police stations and posts in the last 15 months to enhance security in all parts of the industrial city. The Assembly under the MCE’s tenure, last year, increased it revenue generation from 3 to 49 percent and commended officials of the Assembly for their commitment and high performance over the short period.

“What the assembly has done is that, 40% of all the internally generated funds will go into capital intensive projects 40%. So we are shifting from the days where everything or about 80-90% of IGF is spent on recurrent expenditure goods and services and allowances no.

We have gone to the general assembly, we have requested for an allocation and so we have what we call 30 30 40 or 3 3 4 formation and that is supposed to deal with infrastructure. So assuming last year, we made IGF of ten million, we are saying that four million, would directly go into capital projects that is what we are saying”, he said.

The Communication Director of the NDC in the region, Jerry Johnson, was amazed at the level of development in the metropolis and commended the MCE and his team for the good work being undertaken for the people.

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