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The newly refurbished Ridge Hospital in Accra is attracting more patients, which was the desired objective and to reduce the pressure on other facilities like the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, but the patronage is also coming with some challenges.
Women delivered of babies at the hospital and who are unable to pay the increased bills introduced by the facility have to be detained until they are able to raise the money and settle the bills.
The measures instituted by the recently appointed Medical Director, Dr. Emmanuel Sefronyoh, means mothers with National Health Insurance cards must still pay between GH¢670 and GH¢900 before they are discharged from the hospital.
Unhappy nursing mothers and some nurses at the hospital have started raising concerns and asking the Ministry of Health to intervene.
Madam Araba, who recently delivered at the facility, told the Daily Express she was made to pay GH¢690 before leaving the hospital on Wednesday July 25, 2017 with her baby. This amount excludes other expenses she incurred during her stay at the hospital.
These charges, per information available to the Daily Express are illegal and have still not been approved by the Ghana Health Service (GHS).
The Daily Express in its Tuesday July 04, 2017 Edition, published the findings of an investigative report, which confirmed that the hospital was charging illegal fees. The hospital management, following the expose and the intervention of the GHS, said they will suspend the fees.
A memo announcing the suspension was subsequently circulated, but the illegal fees are still being charged.
The Daily Express can also confirm that some nurses and staff of the hospital are also illegally charging pregnant women and mothers GH¢10 a day before their beds are laid and GH¢20 for the dressing of surgical wounds.
When contacted again, Dr. Emmanuel Sefronyoh, who directed and is supervising the collection of the illegal fees, as Medical Director of the facility only said “an in-depth investigation will be conducted”
Source: Fred Yaw Sarpong
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