80-bed infectious diseases centre at KBTH ready next month

Work on an 80-bed infectious disease centre at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital (KBTH)in Accra, is expected to be completed by the end of this month.

The World Bank funded project at an estimated GHC30 million, would serve as a one-stop centre for the effective treatment and management of emerging infectious diseases as part of Ghana’s preparedness plan to handle health emergencies.

It is part of the 430 million dollar facility allotted to the government by the World Bank under the COVID-19 Emergency Preparedness and Response Project.

Work was about 80 percent complete with contractors putting finishing touches to the building when the World Bank Regional Vice President in charge of Western and Central Africa, Mr OusmaneDiagana, visited yesterday.

Mr Diagana is on a three-day working visit to Ghana which is his first since assumption to office in July 2020.

His tour of other World Bank financed projects took him to the Ghana Tech Hub, a technology and innovation hub sited in the Accra Digital Centre, aimed at facilitating the country’s digitalisation agenda.

Received by a delegation led by the Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, and management members of the KBTH, Mr Diaganalauded the government for its health system strengthening measures amidst the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure that no one was left behind.

“I am impressed by the vision of the government and the progress made on this infectious disease centre and I hope it is completed on time.

The World Bank has been in Ghana since 1957. Our active portfolio is worth 2.9 billion dollars across 25 active projects spread across several sectors including health, finance and competitiveness, nutrition and population, jobs, land and urban resilience,” he noted.

Sector Minister, MrAgyemang-Manu, thanked the World Bank for its sustained support to Ghana’s COVID-19 fight, which has contributed to successes chalked in its response and control measures.

According to him, the 430 million dollar facility from the bank “came in good time” to address inadequacies within the health sector as well as boost infrastructure to contain the pandemic.

“We have invested some of this money into rehabilitating the Fevers Unit at Korle Bu into the infectious disease centre and 12 other health infrastructure projects are also ongoing across the country.All regions will have at least one infectious disease centre and we are working to complete them within the stipulated time.”

Ghana, the minister added, was now in the position to store ultra-low temperature vaccines due to the support received from the World Bank among other medications, logistics and equipment like mobile containerised laboratories to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

He further submitted that about 10 million vaccines were presently in stock to aid the COVID-19 vaccination drive, with over 11 million people so far vaccinated, urging the World Bank to continue reposing confidence in government to utilise judiciously every funds received in the interest of citizens.

The Chief Executive Officer of the KBTH, Dr Opoku Ware Ampomah, indicated that the coming on board of the infectious disease centre would enhance research and training among health staff to promote excellence in the delivery of health services.

He said management was keen positioning Korle Bu as a medical excellence hub through revamping of its infrastructure, maintaining a highly skilled workforce and incentivise them to avert the high attrition rate in the health sector.

Dr Ampomahcourted the support of the World Bank to help KBTH deliver on its vision and mandate of becoming a world-class centre of medical excellence.


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