‘Possible public health emergency’ feared in Krobo over power outage

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Health Directorates in Yilo Krobo and Lower Manya Krobo say quality health service delivery is being affected as electricity outage persists in the two municipalities.

They are appealing to the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to switch on the lights, else they would be forced to suspend operations.

For the past one week, the health facilities explain they have been paying hefty amounts to sustain their operations.

The various health facilities have given a breakdown of their expenses and what their current challenges look like.

Find the letter below:

The managements of the Yilo Krobo and Lower Manya Krobo Municipal Health Directorates write to inform your office that power outage since Wednesday 27th of July 2022 is having negative toll on the provision of quality health service delivery in both municipalities.

IMPACT OF RECENT ELECTRICITY POWER OUTAGE ON HEALTH SERVICE DELIVERY IN YILO KROBO

YILO KROBO MUNICIPAL HEALTH DIRECTORATE

As a result of the power outage the municipal Cold Chain Equipment (vaccine fridges and freezers for icepacks) has been relocated to Akorley CHPS compound, therefore on daily basis, the Municipal EPI coordinator has to visit health facility between 3 to 5 times, which results in additional daily fuel expenditures of Two Hundred and Fifty Ghana Cedis (GHc 250.00) .On daily basis to power generator to run the office equipment Municipal Health Directorate spends Five Hundred Ghana Cedis (GHc500.00).

  Ongoing COVID-19 vaccination is also affected as a result vaccination teams, district and sub district supervisors are not able to charge their mobile phones and tablets, therefore not been able to enter data and monitoring/supervisory reports daily on ODK.

SOMANYA POLYCLINIC

  The only generator plant which was donated by ECG to Somanya polyclinic has been taken back without any explanation by ECG and therefore the facility has no alternative source of power.

The power outage has affected all aspects of clinical and public health care in the facility. The most affected areas are maternity units, laboratory services, in- patients, vaccine fridges and administration. Management has taken a decision to hire a generator to assist the laboratory, to ensure that the labour ward has improved lightening for safe deliveries and other emergency procedures, to improve in-patient care and ensure our vaccines are kept within the cold-chain.

The cost of hiring a generator is Two Hundred Ghana Cedis (GHc200.00) per day and the cost of diesel on average per day is Seven Hundred and Fifty Ghana Cedis (GHc750.00).

Polyclinic has also put in place some measures to ensure quality healthcare. These include referring patients that will need more hospitalization days and advance care to other district hospitals that have not been affected by this power problem.

YILO KROBO DISTRICT HOSPITAL

The hospital requires 132 litres of diesel daily to power its generator at a current cost of One
Thousand, Seven Hundred and Ninety-nine Ghana Cedis (GHc 1799.00). So far, Ten Thousand, Nine Hundred and Seventy Five Ghana cedis (GHc10,975.00) has been spent on diesel to power the generator.
    The current trend has forced the Hospital to embark on localized rationing of power during certain times in the day and a cut off to areas like the theater and surgical block.
    The Hospital is barely three months old with very little capital and a host of challenges. The most current consignment of diesel (2201t) which cost Thee Thousand Ghana Cedis (GHc 3,000.00) is yet to be paid for however, the fuel in the generator has dropped necessitating refill. The Hospital is unable to contain the high cost involved in using the generator any further.

IMPACT OF RECENT ELECTRICITY POWER OUTAGE ON HEALTH SERVICE DELIVERY IN LOWER MANYA KROBO

LOWER MANYA KROBO MUNICPAL HEALTH DIRECTORATE
•      The Municipal Health Directorate spends One Thousand and Five Hundred Ghana Cedis (GHI,500.00) on fuel daily since 27/07/2022 to ensure that the vaccines are kept under appropriate Cold Chain Management.
•      Similarly, all vaccines from affected health centres and CHPS compounds have been brought to Municipal Health Directorate cold room, therefore facility EPI coordinators are spending additional transportation cost twice a day on daily basis

A TUA GOVERNMENT HOSPITAL

• Atua Government Hospital spend Three Thousand Ghana Cedis (GH3,000.00) on fuel daily to power the generator, since 27/7/2022. The Hospital has spent over GH18 000 as of 1st August
2022.

ST. MARTIN’S DE PORES HOSPITAL (AGOMANYA)

•      The hospital spends Five Thousand Ghana Cedis (GH5,OOO.00) on fuel daily (24/7) since
27/7/2022.
•      And they have spent so far over GH30,000.00 as of 1st August 2022
From the above submissions from health facilities from both municipalities, the high cost of fuel incurred in powering the generator sets is not sustainable and we may not be able to sustain it to provide the quality health care services as expected.

Therefore, the managements of the health facilities ,wish to appeal to the Government and management of ECG to restore electricity power supply to all health facilities within the affected areas in the shortest possible time to avert a possible public health
emergency.

Source: 3news.com|Ghana

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