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General News of Monday, 4 September 2017

Source: starrfmonline.com

We need over 500 ambulances to be effective – National Ambulance Service


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The Head of the Ghana Ambulance Service Prof Ahmed Zakaria has disclosed the service will need over 500 ambulances to be effective.

According to him, the service has 150 ambulances nationwide with about only 70 on the ground operating.

“We need over 500 ambulances in the country so we can attend to people quickly,” Prof Zakaria said Monday on Morning Starr.

His disclosure comes in the wake of the disturbing report of the death of a six-year-old in the Lower Manya Krobo Municipality of the Eastern Region due to the unavailability of the ambulance.

The six-year-old was knocked down by a motorbike and rushed to the hospital Saturday afternoon with severe traumatic brain injury.

He was then referred to the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital due to the seriousness of his condition, however, there was no ambulance to convey him for the emergency attention.

Information gathered by Starr News indicate that, the entire Lower Manya Krobo has been without an Ambulance for several months as the only ambulance has broken down.

But commenting on the development, Prof Zakaria said it would be unfair to wholly blame the service for the death of the six-year-old.

According to him, emergency response system comprises of; pre-hospital emergency care, and then inter-facility or Intra facility emergency care.

“Once, we jump and we put [the blame] on the ambulance service we are losing so much because for example if the child of that age was knocked down by a vehicle and if he had died on the road then definitely we will understand that the pre-hospital response would have contributed in saving his life,” he told Morning Starr Host Francis Abban.

“Once he got into a health facility the question then was what was done? How severe was the head injury? Was he incubated and put on a life machine awaiting transportation to another facility? What was really done to be able to sustain his life?

“If we take it from that angle it means that we are tackling the problem holistically. But, as soon as we jump into the conclusion that the boy died because there was lack of ambulance we are losing focus because then it means that we will only go into the blame game, especially lambasting the ambulance service and we will focus about our emergency response system in its totally,” he added.

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