The Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH) is collaborating with the University for Development Studies (UDS) to introduce a degree course in anaesthesia. When successful, it would be the first of its kind in the country.

A psychiatry and mental health ward is also to be established and a psychiatrist has already been appointed.

The Chief Executive officer of the TTH, Dr Ken Sagoe, disclosed this at a recent annual review conference of the hospital in Tamale and indicated that the hospital would be designated as a centre of excellence for mother and child care.

The CEO expressed satisfaction over the increasing number of critical staff at the hospital. ?Currently, we have more than a hundred doctors. Nursing staff numbers have more than doubled from 285 to 668 in 2011, while laboratory staff numbers also increased from nine in 2008 to 59 last year,? he stated.

Dr Sagoe stressed that an increase in support and administrative staffing levels had also paved the way for them to establish decentralised departments, with the appointment of administrative managers at all the clinical and diagnostics departments.

According to the CEO, ?the hospital is currently networked and Wi-Fi-enabled. We will partner with Vodafone Ghana this year to enhance the ICT environment and establish a computer lab with on-line training course for all staff.?

He further revealed that there was a slight increase in maternal mortality from the 2010 value of 33 to 47 last year even though the figure was lower than the 2009 figure of 52.

The situation, he explained, was as a result of late referrals from the districts for which reason gynaecologists would be launching a crusade in the districts to update and support the district staff to manage the maternal cases better to reduce the late referrals.

Dr Sagoe, however, expressed concern over the growing number of staff going on retirement and for further studies, the breakdown of equipment and the erratic and fluctuating power supply system at the hospital.

He further mentioned encroachment, lack of vehicles, inadequate staff accommodation and the unpredictable and unreliable water supply situation as other difficulties encountered by his outfit.

?We continue to hire water tankers all year round at very high cost even though in 2011 we constructed a 500 cubic metre underground water tank and laid a 2 km dedicated wide bore pipe line from the Ghana Water Company Mains,? the CEO indicated.

He commended the dedication and hard work of staff and management while acknowledging the contribution and support of the Regional Co-ordinating Council, the health directorate, the UDS and its medical school and other stakeholders.

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