Most medical equipment and consumables donated to Ghana obsolete – Ministry

Ministry of Health (MOH) has confirmed that about 98 per cent of donations from philanthropists to the health sector had been found to be decommissioned by their countries of origin.
Dr Nicodemus Gebe, Head of Biomedical Engineering, MOH, who announced this, said such medical equipment and consumables donated to the sector often had to be destroyed due to their obsolete nature and the fact that they lacked visible expiring dates or manufacturer’s contacts on most consumables.
He said the Ministry would not allow Ghana to be used as a dumping site for such obsolete medical equipment and consumables.
Dr Gebe was responding to questions relating to the state of infrastructure in the Health Sector at a dialogue session at the on-going Third Ghana Policy Fair in Accra on Thursday.
He noted that apart from the fact that their usage could pose serious negative health implications, most of the electrically operated equipment such as Ultra-Sound and X-Ray machines and computers had been found declared as non-compliant with power voltages in their countries of origin and therefore could also not be used in Ghana.
However, Dr Gebe indicated that the Ministry had developed a policy guideline on donations to the health sector, adding “The guidelines have been circulated to all embassies, but it is unfortunate that some of such donations still find their way into the country”.
He explained that the Ministry had limited the acceptance of donations to items such as drip stands, beds and bedside cabinets, but expressed the hope that with time Ghana would be able to halt the reception of such donations entirely to prevent their associated problems.
Dr Gebe called on all stakeholders as well as the Sector’s development partners to assist the health sector deal with the challenge.
The Fair, organised under the auspices of the Ministry of Information, had Mr Joe Gidisu, Minister of Roads and Highways presenting the achievements, challenges and future plans of the Sector.
He recounted the numerous achievements of the Ministry but accepted that there were still countless challenges, regarding the development and completion of infrastructure.
Mr Gidisu however, said the Ministry remained committed to completing all projects to ensure that Ghana’s road network met the demands of an oil economy.
Panelists answered critical concerns of stakeholders relating to their respective Ministries, taking note of suggestions and critiques on various policies and programmes in order to enhance their performances.
They promised to take immediate action to address the various concerns raised. GNA

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