University of Ghana Medical Centre Opens

The 650-bed University of Ghana Medical Centre

Government has officially opened the out-patient Department (OPD) and Administration Unit of the 650-bed facility University of Ghana Medical Centre (UGMC).  

At a short media briefing, the Chairman of the Interim Management Committee (IMC), Dr. Anarfi Asamoa-Baah noted that the Centre would only attend to referral cases limited to three main departments, Dermatology, Ophthalmology, ENT, Laboratory and Pharmacy services with Laboratory and Pharmacy services. According to him, patients with minor ailments and without referrals from other hospitals cannot walk into the new facility.

Dr. Asamoa-Baah addressing journalists present

Dr. Asamoa-Baah said although the facility is not an emergency centre, it has the capacity to cater for some emergency cases.  He said plans were far advanced to establish a well-resourced management team to aid the smooth running of the hospital. In the meantime, however, he said about twenty recruited staff would be rendering services at the facility.

“Consistently we’ve been advised not to make this like Korle-Bu. So we’re very keen that we establish a different culture. A culture that makes this place patient-friendly. A culture that is patient-centered and where health workers have the right attitude and motivation to provide highest level of services. And in order to ensure that this doesn’t turn into Korle-Bu, it is important to have the right people at the top” he noted.

Responding to some concerns from Pressmen, Member of the IMC and Acting Chief Executive Officer of UGMC, Dr. Darius Osei disclosed that all referrals to the centre will be treated for free for the first two weeks. He thereby called on the public’s full cooperation in running the centre. He further noted that the Centre which is meant for specialists would not train undergraduates of Medicine from the University of Ghana, as Korle-Bu will continue to train them.

Dr. Darius Osei responding to some questions from Journalists.  Seated next to him are Prof. Yaa Ntiamoa-Baidu, Member of the University Council and Dr. Olivia Anku-Tsede, Legal Counsel, University of Ghana

Clarifying the power tussle that ensued between the government and the University which led to the delay in the opening of the center, Dr. Osei noted that all issues have been resolved.  He also added that government and the University are partners with regards to the facility.

He further indicated that the position for a substantive CEO and other Administrative staff have been advertised for and in due course, the government would set up a Board to replace the Interim Management Committee.

With the approval of a €47 million loan by Parliament for the completion of the Phase two of UGMC, the project is anticipated to be completed and operational within 24 months. When completed, it would equip facilities such as a VIP maternity and private floor, Cardio-vascular and Open-Heart Surgery unit and a Neurosurgery unit.

Present at the briefing were officials of the University of Ghana, Government officials and friends from the media.

The briefing ended with a tour of the facility.

Some of the facilities toured within the OPD unit.