On Friday, the 19th of January, 2018, the First Lady, Her Excellency, Rebecca Akuffo-Addo, the Ashanti Regional Minister, Hon. Simon Osei-Mensah, the Minister of Health, Hon. Kwaku Agyemang- Manu, the Bantamahene, Nana Baffour Awuah Amankwatia VI and the wife of His Royal Majesty, Lady Julia Osei -Tutu together with their entourage commissioned a New Ultra-Modern Mother and Baby Unit (MBU) at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH).
The new facility, constructed by Africa Building Partners, was in recognition to a documentary done by the multimedia group to tell the story of tragedies at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital’s Maternal Unit, a problem of lack of space resulting in needless deaths which needed urgent action.
Following the documentary which provoked nationwide concern, the Rebecca Foundation, through the Save A Child, Save A Mother Project (SACSAM), in a collaborative effort with the Multimedia Group undertook an awareness and fund raising campaign to aid the completion of a new edifice in 5 months.
The facility which is worth a little over GHc 10,000,000 is made up of a Maternity, Neonatal and Pediatric Intensive Care Units. With a total built area of 2,722 square meters, the facility would allow staff and patients have adequate space for different types of procedures.
The new fully equipped unit is expected to address the high mortality rate recorded as a result of insufficient space, equipment and infections.
The new Mother and Baby Unit (MBU), would also increase available birthing beds from 2 to 11, operating theatres from 2 to 5 with 120 cots and 20 incubators which will provide an infant per cot and incubator, thereby reducing cross contaminations.
The new facility is a green facility, eco- friendly, efficient and meets international standards with an EDGE certified award from the World Bank Group being the first of its kind in Ghana and Africa as a whole.
Welcoming the gathering, the Ashanti Regional Minister, Hon. Simon Osei- Mensah noted that the project, Save A Child, Save A Mother (SACSAM) is an answer to a very critical need of neonatal care. According to the Minister, available statistics indicate that 200,000 pregnant women and 1,000,000 new born babies die from maternal health and new born complications in sub-Saharan Africa every year.
“This is a critical time for life-saving interventions such as the new MBU at KATH. Most of these deaths can be prevented by easy, available and cost-effective solutions for pregnant women and new mothers with infants”, he added.
Hon, Osei –Mensah said the government is committed to providing improved and quality healthcare to the people of Ghana with well-developed and requisite infrastructure and equipment.
He commended the First Lady of the Republic, Nananom and all stakeholders who in diverse ways help put up the edifice for a good work done and urged Ghanaians to do away with poor maintenance culture to keep the quality of the new building.
The First Lady of the Republic of Ghana, Her Excellency, Rebecca Akuffo-Addo noted that,” the vulnerability of mothers and children exposes the vulnerability of our country”. She indicated that Ghana as a country is better than the outrageous scenes in the documentary hence the need to act urgently to solve this situation.
By putting up a new MBU in response to the multimedia documentary, the nation would make positive strides toward decreasing child and maternal mortality and achieving the Sustainable Development Goal 3 which states that “Ensure healthy life and promote healthy living for all at all ages”, she added.
According to the First Lady, the project has taught her that” We are better together” and “We are capable of resolving our challenges”. She noted that we as Ghanaians are capable of solving our own challenges hence the dream of the Addo-Danquah led government to create a “Ghana Beyond Aid “where Ghana as a country will be able to stand on its own and sit at a table as a partner and not a “beggar”.
She added that with the vigorous role of Seth Boateng and Multimedia in realizing this dream, the media is seen as a key to national development and not as a destruction as mostly seen by people.
The ceremony ended with the commissioning of the building which was named after the late Asantehemaa, Nana Afia Kobi Serwaa Ampem II Mother and Baby Unit.