03.03.2005 Health

Bawku health personnel receive awards

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Bawku (U/E) March 3, GNA - The Bawku Municipal Director of Health Services, Dr. William Duodu, has bemoaned recent attacks on health personnel in the District and robbing them of their motor bikes meant for ensuring efficient health care delivery in rural areas. He said in 2004 six personnel were attacked and robbed of their motorbikes.

"These motorbikes are believed to be smuggled out of the country and sold in neighbouring Togo, where they are used in the manufacturing of outboard motors for fishermen," he said

Dr. Duodu expressed this concern at an end-of-year party and awards night for personnel of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) in Bawku at the weekend.

He said these acts were undermining efficient health care delivery and the efforts of health personnel and urged the security agencies to help check the trend.

In all, 10 staff from each of the 10 sub-districts and a retired Medical Assistant were awarded for rendering dedicated services in their respective communities.

They received prizes ranging from television sets and Gas cylinders to 2-burner tabletop gas cookers, in addition to a citation, certificate and plaque.

He said the attacks and robberies had caused a stir among the personnel who were mostly females, resulting in most of them unwilling to risk their lives to undertake outreach programmes in remote villages. According to Dr. Duodu, these acts were adversely affecting the lives of the people and urged personnel to response timely to restore order.

Dr. Duodo said in spite of these incidents and other difficulties, health workers had given a good account of themselves in rendering effective services to control diseases and offer sustained sensitisation programmes.

The Director disclosed that the performance review of the Municipality indicated that they had performed well and expressed the hope that personnel would not relent in their efforts.

He also expressed appreciation to all stakeholders in the health sector for collaborating with the GHS to achieve its set goals. Speaking at the function, the acting Bawku Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), Mr Abdul-Rahman Gumah, announced that over 50 health Aides and Community Health Nurses were being sponsored for training by the Assembly to augment the staff strength of the Service.

He said government's efforts to provide quality healthcare should not be compromised by politicising the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), adding "we need to pursue this noble vision vigorously till healthcare delivery is accessible, efficient and affordable to all".

Mr Gumah charged health personnel to be ambassadors of the scheme by constantly educating the people on the need to register to be part of it and to ensure that it was fully implemented this year.

Mr. Gumah said government recognised the tremendous efforts of health workers in the discharge of their duties and had started providing vehicles and housing schemes to mitigate problems such as transportation and accommodation.

The MCE pledged the Assembly's determination to collaborate with the security services to flush out motorbike snatchers to ensure that personnel performed their duties in a free manner devoid of fear.

He congratulated all award winners for their meritorious and dedicated services and urged those who did not win awards to work harder so they would also be counted next year.

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