Preterm babies and other newborn babies with complications have had their survival chances greatly boosted following the inauguration of a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) for the Upper West Regional Hospital in Wa.
Equipment of the newborn care facility was acquired with the support of a private Italian donor through the UNICEF Italian National Committee.
The hospital, which has been operating without such a facility have had a significant number of babies losing their lives as a result prompting management of the hospital to make an appeal to UNICEF for support.
Handing over the equipment to management of the hospital in Wa, Mr. Giovanni Favilli, the Italian Ambassador to Ghana, described the gesture as a small token of their support and hoped that in the future, they would be able to do more for children in the area.
“If children can have a good start, then they can grow to become very responsible adults”, he pledged their continuous partnership with management of the hospital to ensure that the facility continued to be in best shape to benefit children in the region.
Anne Clair Dufay, UNICEF Ghana Representative noted that the inauguration of the newborn facility in the region was part of a much broader initiative to invest in young children in order to give them the best start.
She noted that Nero Science had shown that the brain of the child developed in the first five years, adding that, investing in young children brought economic returns.
Dr. Joseph Teye Nuertey, the Regional Director of Health Services noted that the Hospital on its part, committed a total amount of GH¢42, 000.00 from the Internally Generated Funds (IGF) of the Hospital to refurbish the place in readiness to receive the equipment.
He thanked UNICEF and the people of Italy for the gesture and assured that the equipment would be put to good use to ensure they stemmed the tide on newborns dying in the region.
Dr. Barnabas Ganda, the Medical Director of the Hospital noted that before the inauguration of the facility, it was very critical for babies to survive.
He stressed on the need for staff to receive appropriate training in order to manage the facility well to the benefit of children in the region.
Dr. Ganda said the hospital also need a total amount of 110,000 US dollars to put up a theatre just behind the maternity ward to cater for mothers needing the services of a theatre.
The Medical Director appealed to other benevolent organisations and donors to come to their aid to save the lives of mothers while they gave life.
The team also handed over similar newborn care equipment to the Tumu Hospital in Sissala East as well as Water and Sanitation Hygiene facilities to some Community-Based Health Planning and Services compounds in some communities in the Wa West District.