When A Chap Dies Out Of Unavailability Of Bed

I know our system is out of date and needs an immediate update to catch up with the technological advancement in Western countries.

If you’re a Ghanaian, please, never think this system can protect you when your health condition is deteriorating. Come to think of it.

When last did you go to the hospital? Were you satisfied with the way you were treated or otherwise? I don’t blame some of our current crop of Nurses and Doctors.

Besides, when a nation is built on protocol and whom you know, our health system will continue to dwindle.

Nonetheless, there are others who are professionals and compassionate. If an innocent child can die all in the name of lack of bed as alleged by the deceased father then, I can state unequivocally that Ghana is sick.

It is a glaring truth that the centre cannot hold. The entire Medical Fraternity must bow in shame. I would humbly implore the deceased father to take a legal action against all whose negligence caused the life of his beloved son.

How does “there wasn’t a bed sound in your ears as a leader”? A life gone a begging simply because of someone’s action or inaction and we still parade ourselves as professionals?

As a student, I don’t joke with my nap because it refreshes my mind and keeps me healthy and strong. I slept only to wake up to miss 30 calls. At a point, I was frightened. Besides, I’m not a Politician nor a Bishop.

I’m simply an individual who wants Ghana to see transformation in every sector of the economy. As a result, some colleagues of mine admire my constant desire to see a change in this country.

Apparently, those missed calls were colleagues  who wanted my candid opinion on the Roman Catholic Hospital Battor, where a 12-year-old boy allegedly died simply because there’s no bed at 37 Military Hospital and the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital where he was to be referred.

This article is backed by the missed calls. Frankly speaking, I wept uncontrollably because he could have become a President in the near future.

How can this happen in a 21st Century for crying out loud? Ah! What is wrong with us as a people? Please, I want to know.

So I decided to take a listen to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Ambulance Service (NAS), Professor Ahmed Nunhu Zakariah indicating that lack of proper arrangements with Paramedics possibly caused the death of the 12-year-old at the Roman Catholic Hospital, Battor in the Volta Region.

To me, Professor Zakariah’s clarification on the matter wasn’t concrete. Much as there are limited spaces at referral centres in the country, and the need for a proper communication between the immediate Healthcare Providers and their colleagues in other facilities to discuss the case and ascertain if there’s a bed and Healthcare Providers to attend to a patient or otherwise, negligence shouldn’t be justified.

Another point he raised was the aspect of preventing instances where patients and their relatives will be left stranded and traumatized at the hospital when due process wasn’t followed. Well said, Professor.

However, I disagree with you based on the fact that in every rule there is exception.  Yes, this is the practice but not when negligence was at play early on. In a country where we can’t possibly boast of enough hospital beds to cater for the lives of the sick, is that one too a country?

The fact that the deceased father had to get in touch with the Ningo-Prampram Member of Parliament, Mr Sam George for intervention is worrying. In the advanced countries, the mere mentioned of lack of beds could have had all involved dismissed and license revoked.

However, we live in a part of the world where people mess with precious lives and still defend themselves.

Whether Paramedics, Surgeons or Physicians, the fact still remains that a life has been wasted out of negligence. Do you think, the President’s son could have suffered this same fate? No!

You dare not give this clarification but it happened to a son of an “ordinary man” so there’s a deliberate effort to do damage control. If a citizen’s son could suffer this negligence then, it is a wakeup call to the government to procure more hospital beds.

There is absolutely no justification for negligence. At this point, the best the National Ambulance Service (NAS) Boss could have done was to render an unqualified apology to the bereaved family not this damage control speech.

The incident is portraying only one picture. That’s, in Ghana, if you truly want to enjoy life to the brim, you must either be the President,  Vice President, An MP or Medical Doctor, “Top Don”, I call them.

For how long will this system work? My deepest condolences to the bereaved family.


About the author; Stephen Bernard Donkor is an Award winning Journalism student of the Ghana Institute of Journalism (GIJ). Writer’s email: sbdonkorjunior@gmail.com

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