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Regarded as the engine room of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital (APH), the laboratory section of the facility is likely to fold up should management fail to raise an estimated GHS 500,000 to purchase new machines to revive it.
Some of these machines which were described by the hospital as obsolete and have been in use for more than two decades are prone to frequent breakdowns, with majority of them being out of use.
The government in its 2017 budget statement hinted it will cut back on the annual government revenue to be ceded to some state institutions including the various psychiatric hospitals in the country.
In that statement, the Internally Generated Fund (IGF) retentions of the psychiatric hospitals, Pantang, Accra Psychiatric Hospital and Ankafo in the Central Region have been capped, meaning they will not retain all their internally generated funds.
Speaking to the Goldstreet Business last Friday at a fundraising dinner organized to solicit funds to purchase machines for the hospital, Dr. Pinaman Appau, Director of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital, said the situation was likely to get out hand if nothing was done about it.
“Essential parts of broken down machines are difficult to find because they are out of production; there is lack of qualified personnel with requisite knowledge to service and maintain existing machines when they break down. For the little serviceable equipment at the lab, we are compelled to spend our meager funds to maintain them”, she disclosed.
Dr. Appau said the hospital continuously struggles to acquire basic modern laboratory apparatuses such as, Biochemistry analyzer, Hematology analyzer, Drug analyzer and Electroconvulsive therapy machine for its daily activities.
“Every patient that is admitted at APH goes through the lab to obtain information on diagnosis, treatment and prevention; it is therefore worrying that we don’t have some of these machines. The facility is handicapped and we need help”, she admitted.
The Director of the Mental Health Authority and keynote speaker at the event, Dr. Akwasi Osei, said the hospital was truly in distress and the initiative to raise funds to purchase equipment, was in the right direction.
He said before the full benefits of the Mental Health Law can be explored, the Mental Health Legislation must be passed to enable the hospital to realize its potentials.
“APH has been on the drawing board of successive government and the location of the facility is rather a priority instead of giving us the desired attention. Go to Yaba in Nigeria, and the psychiatric hospital is in the middle of the city; I don’t think the location of the hospital should be a topic for discussion”, he said.
Chairperson of the event, Dr. Joyce Aryee underscored the need to consider mental health policies as very important in the development of every nation that desires to develop.
Source: Wisdom Jonny-Nuekpe ||goldstreetbusiness