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23.03.2005 Regional News

Rotary Club assists St. Dominic's Hospital

By GNA
Akwatia, (E/R) March 23, GNA - The Rotary Club of Ottendorf and some Rotary Volunteer doctors in Germany have donated medical equipment and some emergency medicine valued at about 20,000 Euros to the St. Dominic's Hospital at Akwatia in the Kwaebibirem District of the Eastern Region.
The donation was made at Akwatia on behalf of the donors by Dr. Klaus-Gerrit Gerdts, a Paediatric Physician, who is in a four-week voluntary service at the hospital with sponsorship from Rotary Club of Germany.
Dr Gerdts, a Rotarian said, the donation was to help set up an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at the Children's Ward of the hospital. Some of the equipment included an ultrasound scanner, X-ray viewer, full resuscitation facilities including oxygen and a baby manikin for training purposes.
Others were intubations set and suctioning device, a baby warming bed (kangaroo care type) for two neonates, respirator bag and ventilators, and paediatric ambu-bags with appropriate masks. He said second batch of equipment is due in May this year with a third one arriving at a latter date and gave the total cost on completion of the project as 100,000 Euros.
Dr Gerdts, who has 25 years professional experience in paediatric emergency medicine said, during two visits with fellow Rotarians to the hospital last year, he noted that the facility lacked an ICU, a situation which he regrettable observed existed in most health facilities in the country.
He said moved by the plight of the very sick and the dying, some of whom would have been saved had there been an ICU, he solicited for funding to help the hospital when he returned to Germany.
Ghanaian health workers, Dr. Gerdts noted, were highly skilled, hardworking and motivated, but what was lacking, was the absence of modern machinery and equipment to enhance their work for the desired impact.
He said for now, his targets were the children and maternity wards where the rate of neonatal deaths was high, but cautioned that, it was not the fault of the hospital but because the facility was a referral point, and had to take on a lot of cases form far and beyond some of which came in very hopeless situations.
Dr. Dan Annor-Adjei, paediatrician in-charge of the children's ward said when he assumed duty last year, he realised that most of the preventable neonatal deaths did not receive any form of intensive care and management needed to sustain those very sick neonates due to lack of equipment.
Dr. Annor-Adjei said he quickly proposed an ICU as a need to cut down children mortality at the hospital and communicated his concern to Dr Gerdts who agreed to arrange for funding for the project.
He said nurses at the ward would be given the requisite training with sponsorship from rotary donors through Dr. Gerdts.
Dr (Mrs) Mercy Dawson, Medical Superintendent at the hospital on behalf of management expressed the hospital's appreciation to Dr. Gerdts and the donors and gave assurance that the equipment would be put to good use.


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