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18.04.2007 General News

Drivers sign MOU to reduce maternal mortality


The Mfantseman District Assembly, Health Directorate and Drivers Unions have reached an agreement to help reduce maternal mortality in the area.

Under the accord drivers are to convey women in labour to health facilities without demanding spot payment for their services.

Their unions would pay them after negotiations.

They are also to pick nurses and staff of the Health Service on outreach programmes at reduced fares.

Speaking after the signing of the agreement at Saltpond, Samuel Sosi, District Director of Health noted that delays in conveying women in labour to health facilities was a major cause of maternal mortality.

He commended the drivers for accepting to assist in curbing maternal deaths and gave the assurance that the Directorate would undertake a programme to explain the agreement to transport owners and drivers throughout District for their cooperation.

Robert Quainoo-Arthur, District Chief Executive (DCE), called for collaboration between Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs) and midwives at health facilities.

He urged TBAs in the communities to refer all cases beyond their capabilities to health facilities for the attention of qualified midwives.

The DCE appealed to the Directorate to encourage the people to patronise Community Health and Planning Services (CHPS) compounds established to make health services accessible to the people.

Mr Quainoo-Arthur noted that people still preferred to go to hospitals when their problems could be solved within their communities at CHPs compounds.

Dr Aaron Offei, Central Regional Director of Health, in an address read on his behalf noted that the understanding would not be successful without the cooperation of drivers and transport owners in remote parts of the District.

He appealed to the District Directorate and the Drivers unions to ensure that all the partners understood the agreement.

Matthew Ehuren, District Health Parent, urged the Assembly and the Directorate to institute an incentive package for drivers under the programme.

Oscar Kweku Appiah, Chairman of the Mankessim Number Three Branch of the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU), on behalf of the Unions, appealed to health personnel not to delay drivers who conveyed accident victims and other patients to health facilities.

Source: GNA