The Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in the Ashanti Region has suspended new emergency admissions following an acute shortage of doctors at the facility.
This was captured in an internal memo issued by the directorate of surgery to the Chief Executive Officer of the hospital and sighted by citifmonline.com.
The memo stated that, management of the facility arrived at the decision following an emergency meeting convened to review the impact of the shortage on their delivery.
An emergency meeting held on 12th September 2017, all residents in the directorate have resolved with immediate effect the following:
To suspend new emergency admissions from 12noon today [Tuesday] from all admission portals.
To continue quality inpatient care for the over 250 patients currently on admission.
According to the surgery directorate, the “action has been necessary because of the acute shortage of doctors in the directorate.”
“Considering our current staff strength, we are of the opinion that further admissions will endanger the lives of patients and impede the provision of quality care. We would like to put on record that this problem was anticipated by all residents in the hospital and management was notified in writing two weeks ago. Unfortunately, management is yet to communicate a response. This problem has been recurring for the past 7 years and we hope an appropriate action is taken to resolve this issue permanently,” the surgery directorate added.
Meanwhile, citifmonline.com understands that approximately 150 house officers [new doctors] who completed their rotation at the hospital have left leading to the current problems.
Sources say newly qualified doctors who are expected to replace them have still not received financial clearance from the Ministry of Finance to start working.
The absence of these junior doctors who form the backbone of the health care delivery system at the teaching hospital is said to be putting a huge strain on the few senior colleagues around.
Some departments and directorates are also said to have been forced to reduce their services since they don’t have the capacity to sustain full scale work without the junior house officers.
By: Godwin A. Allotey & Hafiz Tijani/citifmonline.com/Ghana