Former President John Dramani Mahama has donated Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) worth GHC300,000 to hospitals across the country to assist frontline health workers in the fight against the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.
Announcing the items in a Facebook live video, the flagbearer of the largest opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), said he has given 500 gumboots together with 500 PPEs that contain sanitizers, facemasks, gloves, headcovers, and other critical items to the NDC COVID-19 team to be distributed to the Tamale Teaching Hospital, Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, and other regional and district hospitals.
However, due to the threats by health workers of the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital to lay down their tools if they don’t get adequate PPEs, ex-president Mahama promised to procure an additional 150 PPEs at an extra cost for the hospital.
“In view of the situation in Korle Bu in particular and the threats from the health workers, in respect of their own protection, I’ve had to make some adjustments in the distribution formula and we’re currently looking around to secure an additional 150 PPEs at an extra cost of GHC90,000 to reach out to other facilities in the regions. This puts the total number of PPEs we’ll be handing over to 650 sets at a cost of GHC390,000,” he noted.
According to him, “I make this modest contribution to the fight to raid our beloved country of this most insidious ailment. It is my hope that it goes some way to alleviate the plight of our brave frontline health workers as the authorities make arrangements to increase the supply of these items.”
He further indicated that due to the massive investments he made in the health sector during his tenure as president, the hospitals he renovated and built are now being used as treatment and isolation centres for COVID-19 patients.
“It is with great humility that I note the massive investments that were made in health facilities during my tenure as president and I’m happy to note that these are becoming a part of the mainstay of the response to the novel coronavirus. This marks progress and demonstrates what vision and foresight can do in nation-building,” he said.
He further congratulated all frontline health workers and urged them to remain steadfast and continue with the good works in their fight against the virus.
He also proposed to the government to immediately develop a “National Infectious Disease Response Plan that clearly sets out the specific steps that must be taken to prevent the entry of such diseases, quickly arrest them even if they do enter our shores at a very early stage and reduce their impact to the barest minimum on our population.”
“We must establish another medical research centre with capacity like Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research in the northern part of Ghana. We must extend the 37 Military hospital doubling the current bed size and also build an infectious diseases centre there to cater for the southern sector to help with the management of cases like Ebola and COVID-19. A second and fully equipped national infectious disease centre should be built in the middle and northern sectors of the country. As part of our strategic medical stock, we must have items such as PPEs and other vital logistics in place well in advance of an outbreak,” he added.