COVID-19: The ways forward for Upper West – Dr. Gandau Outlines

Dr. Gandaa, Former Medical Director For Upper West Hospital

In the wake of the coronavirus (covid-19) outbreak in the Upper West Region coupled with Cerebrospinal Meningitis which has reportedly killed about 18 people in some four districts, former Medical Director of the Upper West Regional Hospital, Dr. Barnabas Naa Gandau has reiterated his earlier call for the entire management team at  Regional Health Administration to be replaced immediately.

Dr. Gandau is also calling for the replacement of senior staff at Upper West Regional Hospital because in his view, management team of the RHA and the Hospital are responsible for the poor Healthcare delivery in the region.

According to him, the presence of covid-19 in the region can partly be blamed on the poor leadership style of health management team members in the region.

In a Facebook post on Saturday morning, Dr. Gandau cited specifically Deputy Director Administration (DDA), Deputy Director Clinical Care (DDCC), Deputy Director Public Health (DDPH) and the Deputy Director Pharmaceutical Services (DDPS).

The consultant Obstetrics and Gynaecologist who is also a senior lecturer at the University for Development Studies (UDS) Medical School, further called for immediate constitution of a multi-disciplinary Emergency Response Team to be dispatched to the UWR with the needed resources immediately to start dealing with COVID 19.

“The current staff strength is already inadequate to offer quality service in ordinary times. We can only worsen the situation by allowing the region to handle COVID-19 alone.

“I’m ready to be part of any of the above, especially No.2. I’m a Health worker, I cannot stay at home. I CANNOT WATCH GHANAIANS DIE WHEN I STILL CAN DO SOMETHING. Almighty God Shall Always Be in Control!!!”, he said.

Below is his Facebook post:

Good morning Ghanaians and citizenry living in the UWR, I did not sleep last night after the news got to me that a case was confirmed in the region. I know of you neither slept.

It’s unfortunate but it’s not SURPRISING, at least to me. Is it also surprising that 18 persons have died already from CSM in the last 3 months in just four districts of the UWR?

Last year around this time, I released what I entitled “Hardcore Facts about Healthcare Delivery in the UWR”. It was actually a weekly series I intended to publish but after the first release, which specifically dealt with leadership of the health sector in the region that was responsible for the poor healthcare services in the region, several Committees, personalities and groups were set up to deal with me, first for me not to publish subsequent editions and also to silence me all together. These committees including the The Health Management Committee of the UWR that should give informed decisions policy direction to the RCC for quality healthcare services in the region rather recommended to government I should be sacked from my position as Medical Director of the UWRH which was immediately done and widely publicized in all the media (just google Dr. Naa Gandau sacked). In my handing over notes to my Ag. Successor and copied to the Regional Minister and the Director General of Ghana Health Service, I recommended that for minimum quality Health Care delivery, leadership of both the RHA and that of the Regional hospital should be entirely transferred and new ones put in place. None of my recommendations was adhered implemented.

After Dr. Naa Gandau was sacked, sooner than later, the current “Know all and Do all alone” Director of Health Services of the UWR, Dr. Osei Kuffour turned his fire on the Leadership of The Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association (GRNMA) for intervening on behalf of 524 newly recruited nurses who were asked by the RDHS to pay one hundred Ghana Cedis each and still travel to the regional capital for their biometric registration.

I know none of these matters including my dismissal has fully been resolved. I’m also aware the RDHS is not in good terms with his subordinate officers. It is equally speculated that the Hon. Regional Minister is not very happy with the director’s leadership style.

With all these above scenarios occurring in just less than a year in a region that has already been deprived and redeprived, there is no wonder, we are where we are in the UWR…… that a disease of this nature will get into Ghana and the third region to rear it’s ugly head is the UWR. It is a strong indication that “When the Centre Can No Longer Hold, Things Will Definitely Fall Apart”.

Since I was sacked in August 2019, I still continue to keep an eye on happenings especially in the health sector in the region and make meaningful suggestions and inputs to provision of quality health care services to citizens in the UWR? The Hon regional Minister can confirm this and the MD of the Regional whom I wrote to about putting the CT scan in the UWRH to use in order to stop patients and relatives from risking their lives commuting to and from Ksi and Tmle every day and night to do CT-Scan at a very high cost.

In the wake of the current situation in the UWR: Meningitis and now COVID 19, I Dr. Barnabas B. Naa Gandau, once again recommend the following:

  1. GHS should immediately replace the entire Team at the RHA with an Interim experienced one- it’s actually filling the huge gaps (DDA, DDCC, DDPH, DDPS). All these positions in brackets are vacant. It can stay on after the pandemic or replaced with formally appointed RHA.
  2. Immediately constitute a multi-disciplinary Emergency Response Team to be dispatched to the UWR with the needed resources immediately to start dealing with COVID 19. The current staff strength is already inadequate to offer quality service in ordinary times. We can only worsen the situation by allowing the region to handle COVID 19 alone.

I’m ready to be part of any of the above, especially No.2. I’m a Health worker, I cannot stay at home. I CANNOT WATCH GHANAIANS DIE WHEN I STILL CAN DO SOMETHING. Almighty God Shall Always Be in Control!!!

I’m NOT denigrating the image of the my home region, neither am I trying to cause fear and panic. We are in serious crisis and we are in NEED. So I’m just crying loud enough for urgent help.

By SavannahNewsOnline.Com/Philip Liebs

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