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Feature Article of Monday, 26 November 2012

Columnist: Sodzi-Tettey, Sodzi

GMA’s “Consulting Room”

A GMA, PZ CUSSONS & GTV PRODUCTION

Imagine being welcomed into a consulting room with the comfortable looks of a living room. Imagine feeling so relaxed your complaints don’t simply vanish out of intimidation from the consultation experience. You want to talk; your doctor has time to listen. Imagine an interaction with the doctor that is entirely focused on addressing your concerns in a full hour without the much talked about haste to diagnose and dispense with a prescription. Imagine having unfettered week long access to qualified doctors that are positioned to address ongoing health concerns that are not tackled within the constraints of an hour. Imagine doctors not just describing a surgical procedure on television but actually bringing you footage from the theatre.
Live, interactive, client focused!
Imagine this interactive live television health programme designed to bring authentic quality health information suitable for the entire family’s consumption. Imagine a television programme that has such a strong client focus that selected topics are not based on diseases per se but on patient complaints. After all, patient’s don’t come to the consulting room to complain about malaria, they talk about fever, headache, chills, … And what if their headache is not due to malaria but to undiagnosed hypertension? They don’t come to complain about antepartum hemorrhage, they know bleeding in pregnancy. They don’t complain about obstructive apnea, they know about poor quality sleep from snoring till the whole house shakes! Imagine getting an immediate response to all your health questions within the hour. Imagine having an opportunity as a viewer and a potential patient to have a live studio interaction with your doctors to actually discuss your complaints thus delivering a touch of reality to the programme. So instead of building the programme around symptoms as described in a medical textbook, we have a real client in studio to actually describe how they feel while a group of doctors engage him/her. Imagine the situation where studio doctors at the end of their interaction with the patient outline a management plan that requires further in hospital care including possible surgical intervention. Imagine contact is then made with PZ Cussons, sponsors of the programme and the patient’s treatment based on doctors’ recommendations is actually paid for.
Imagine no more! Welcome the “Consulting Room” the game changing live television show – designed by the Ghana Medical Association, sponsored by PZ Cussons, and technically produced by the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation. Hosted by a doctor –Titus Beyuo—with training in broadcasting, the show is scheduled to hit your Ghana Television screens on Sunday at 830 to 930 pm starting from 11th November, 2012.
“The Consulting Room” is the Ghana Medical Association’s latest attempt to demystify the traditional consulting room and bring health to the doorsteps of the people. It is a breath of fresh air and represents a novelty in many respects. Billed as a family health programme, the Consulting Room plans to tackle the entire spectrum of family health concerns – maternal and child health, adult medical issues etc. Viewers also have the opportunity to benefit from appealing PZ hampers.
Quizzed about whether the relaxed theme of the Consulting Room’s setting would not give a false impression about what actually pertains in the real word of medical consulting –over crowded out patient’s departments, claustrophobic consulting rooms, pressured health professionals etc. –, Dr. Titus Beyuo, programme host pointed out that “we want to use this programme to educate and change the behaviors of both the care giver and the care seeker to aspire to best practices in patient relations and management. As a health professional, no matter how packed your day is or how heavy your work load, you can always afford a smile to relax your patient and make it easy for him or her to express themselves and feel the full benefits of the consulting room experience.”
Ghana Broadcasting Corporation has expressed its total commitment to advancing public health education as a national broadcaster imparting authentic information. PZ Cussons, on the other hand, has historically produced its pro health range of products including the Camel antiseptic range that offers total home protection and for whom sponsoring a health programme came as a natural decision. Further, PZ already enjoys an existing relationship with the Ghana Medical Association that has witnessed creative collaborations in Annual Public Lectures, medical outreaches to many districts and sub districts and health advocacy. GMA’s commitment to the Consulting Room is further demonstrated through its composition of a technical medical team that develops content for each episode of the programme, links patients’ concerns to various doctors and ensures that viewers are getting the attention they need through having their expressed concerns addressed in the various episodes.
The Consulting Room will be launched live on Ghana Television at 830 pm tomorrow with its maiden edition. Its first season is expected to air the first thirteen episodes.
Sodzi Sodzi-Tettey
Sodzi_tettey@hotmail.com
www.sodzisodzi.com
9th November, 2012

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