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General News of Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Source: GNA

Coronavirus: Nurses and Midwives to get free transport services


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Nurses and Midwives in Accra, Tema, Kasoa, and Kumasi will soon get access to free transportation services amid the restriction of movement, which has rendered many commercial vehicles non-operational.

This followed a report to the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association of the difficulty a number of nurses and midwives went through with regards to transportation to their health facilities on Monday.

The Association is, therefore, collaborating with Bolt, a private transportation company, and the Ministry of Transport to seek their services for its members.

Mrs Perpetual Ofori-Ampofo, the President of the Association, disclosed this at a meeting organised by the Association to discuss with stakeholders how best to protect nurses and midwives in the COVID-19 pandemic.

The meeting was aired live on Facebook for members of the Association to join nationwide because of the social distancing and restrictions on movement.

Most public transports are not operating due to the ‘stay at home’ lockdown, hence the difficulty by some nurses to access transportation to their workplaces.

President Akufo-Addo on Friday, March 27, announced the restrictions as part of measures to control the spread of the novel Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), which had kept most members of the public at home.

Mrs Ofori-Ampofo said the Association had provided Bolt with the biodata of its members, therefore, upon request, they would receive a free ride to their health facilities.

“However, the services, when rolled out, would not be used inappropriately by members but only from their residences to their health facilities,” she noted.

She gave the assurance that they were covered under the insurance package announced by the Health Minister for health personnel who would be at the frontline in response to the COVID-19 cases.

According to the Health Minister, health personnel were entitled to GH¢350,000.00 Group Life, GH¢25,000.00 Critical Illness and GH¢10,000.00 Total Temporal Disability (all causes) insurance packages.

Mrs Ofori-Ampofo said the Association had reached out to pharmaceutical companies to support its members with hand sanitizers to make their work easier.

Dr Barnabas Kwame Yeboah, the Head of Nursing and Midwifery Department, Ministry of Health, advised members of the Association to exercise caution while attending to patients, by observing preventive measures like ‘barrier nursing’ to protect themselves.

He urged the leadership of all health facilities to get flexible working conditions and periods for their nurses and midwives to enable them to observe the social distancing directive and protect themselves.

Dr Dinah Baah-Odoom, a Psychiatrist with the Ghana Psychology Council, said at this critical moment what health workers needed the most was to guard against fear.

She called on the nurses and the public, in general, to strictly observe the preventive protocols to stay safe.

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