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Opinions of Thursday, 20 July 2017

Columnist: Musbau Razak

President meets the Press: Why Captain Smart asked the most important question

An improvised ambulance used in some parts of the country An improvised ambulance used in some parts of the country

To my realisation, the most important question asked yesterday was one from captain Smart. To learn that in a country of over 27million people, there are only about 38 working ambulances in the country is a shock.

Moreover, of the 38left, they can only best be used merely for transporting people to the hospital and can least provide any other service.They are so poorly equipped and can hardly offer any pre hospital treatment.

This is the hard truth, Ghana has one of the poorest emergency services with very few ambulances that struggle to move through congested streets in cases of an emergency.

The inefficiency of the emergency system has encouraged the practice where private cars and sometimes taxicabs become the alternative ambulance in case of emergency.

In most cases, the inefficiencies have led to the loss of precious lives as it happened in the Kintampo-Tamale accident in 2016 which claimed over 60 lives and left 25 others injured.

Early this year, as reported few lives were lost in the Manchester attack thanks to the fast response by the emergency service.

And more shocking is the fact that of the 38ambulances in Ghana, almost all are stationed in the city. These services can hardly be found in the rural areas. This is a more pressing challenge requiring the earliest response and captain smart who doubles as the ambulance service ambassador has my praise for raising this matter.

This was the most important question of the about 19questions asked at the encounter to me. One which concerns even my grandmother in the village.