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Health News of Tuesday, 26 February 2019


GHS sets March for distribution of essential medical supplies via drones

Director General of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Anthony Nsiah-Asare Director General of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Anthony Nsiah-Asare

President Nana Akufo-Addo is expected to launch the controversial drone technology by March ending to pave the way for essential medical supplies, including blood, to be distributed to health facilities nationwide via the use of drone.

Construction work on one of the four distribution centres to be built is progressing steadily at Amanase near Suhum in the Eastern Region.

Director General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) Dr. Anthony Nsiah-Asare, told Onua FM Tuesday that the distribution centre will be completed by the end of March this year for President Akufo-Addo to commission same.

“The Amanase will be a distribution site. We shall have four of them and it will be like small airplane at a small airport. That is where the medicines will be distributed from so if you need a medicine, you place a call to these places and the drone will take it to your destination” he said.

He told host of Yen Sempa Bright Kwesi Asempa that by the end of March, the “President will launch the drone in Ghana”.

He said the three other distribution centres are expected to also be completed in October this year, saying by the “ending of September or October, all the four sites should be ready for use”.

Parliament late last year approved contract between the Zipline Ghana and the Ghana Health Service for the former to deliver essential medical supplies to health faiclities nationwide.

Eighty-eight thousand dollars is expected to be spent monthly by each of the four distribution centres for a four-year period.

According to the Ghana Health Service, the project cost per service delivery is pegged at 17 dollars which is lower than what is being charged in Rwanda where Zipline operates similar service.

The company is expected to deliver at least 150 flights daily in a 24 hour service delivery of 184 essential medical supplies.

The project has since becoming public received criticism from a section of the pubic, the minority in parliament and civil society groups including IMANI Ghana which argued it will not impacted much on the country’s healthcare delivery.