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04.08.2012 General News

Coroner's report is mandatory when one dies within 24 hours in hospital- Akosa

By Ghana||Nathan Gadugah
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A former Director General of the Ghana Health Service Prof Agyemang Badu Akosa has stated emphatically that a coroner's reports is mandatory when a person dies within 24 hours of any institution including a hospital.

His comments follow controversy over whether a coroner's report is necessary to find out the exact cause of the death of late President John Mills.

Chairman of the Funeral Planning Committee Mr Totobi Quakyi had hinted during a press conference that a coroner's report may not be necessary in the case of the death of the ex-president because he died at the 37 Military Hospital and in the competent hands of doctors.

If anything, he averred it is the responsibility of the doctors to make a comment on the circumstances leading to the death of the president.

It is his understanding, that a coroner's report is only necessary when a person dies outside the jurisdiction of a hospital.

But some critics have disagreed.
Traditional leader and lawyer, Nana Asante Bediatuo has however dismissed that assertion insisting a coroner's report is necessary.

On Joy FM and MultiTV news analysis programme on Saturday, Prof Badu Akosa gave his professional opinion on when a coroner's report is needed.

He stated when a person dies in an institution- school, hospital; prison etc- a coroner's report is needed and it is mandatory.

He added even when a person is brought into a hospital and dies within 24 hours a coroner's report is still mandatory.

President John Mills according to official government statement died 2:15, Tuesday July 24, 2012, shortly after being sent to the 37 Military Hospital.

The cause of death is yet to be made public even though international news sources have cited throat cancer.

Prof Agyemang Badu Akosa insisted the coroner's report is to ascertain whether the death of a person was natural or unnatural.

He explained a coroner in Ghana is the same as the magistrate whose duty it is to request for the autopsy report on the circumstances surrounding the death of any person under the circumstances he had early on recounted.

He said when the report is done, the cause of death is immediately known and the report issued to the coroner or the magistrate in the case of Ghana who will then take action depending on what the content of the report says.

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