Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has joined hundreds of mourners and sympathisers at a memorial service of the late Professor Ohene-Frimpong, at the Accra International Conference, Accra.
Prof. Ohene-Frimpong, former President of the Sickle Cell Foundation Ghana, died on May 7, this year at aged 70 in Philadelphia, USA where he was seeking medical attention.
Dr Bawumia in a tribute described the late Professor Ohene-Frimpong as a humble and distinguished personality who dedicated his research work to sickle cell, and made major advances in the field, adding that Ghana owed him at lot of gratitude.
“Dr Ohene-Frimpong was a man who was driven to do good not just for his immediate family but also for the world as a whole,” he stressed.
The Vice President in the tribute announced that hydroxyurea, a drug for the treatment of sickle cell shall be placed under the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) in honour of Ohene-Frimpong who prior to his death was advocating for same.
The drug was brought to Ghana following a partnership between Ghana and Novartis -a global healthcare company in 2018 to ensure that sickle cell patients lived a normal life.
However, the deal with Novartis was set to end this year and Prof. Ohene-Frimpong had since been championing the cause for government to step in and ensure that the drug was placed under the NHIS so patients would continue to benefit since it was expensive.
“He insisted that we ensured that the NHIS would cover the drug and I am happy to say that government and the Ghana Health Service (GHS) has committed to adopting hydroxyurea under the scheme for sickle cell patients,” the Vice President stated.
“It is the right thing to do and that would be a befitting legacy for him. He dedicated his life to lessen the suffering of people and had a great passion towards sickle cell,” he stated.
On her part, Mrs Janet Ohene-Frimpong, wife of Prof. Ohene-Frimpong said her husband gave his life to save humanity and the country at large.
“He was an epitome of selflessness, a great father and a hero who stood for all and must celebrated even after death,” she stated.
Dr Bawumia was accompanied by his wife Samira Bawumia, former Ghana’s Ambassador to the USA, Baffour Adjei Bawuah, and other personalities and loved ones who took turns to pay tribute to the late Prof. Ohene-Frimpong.
BY MICHAEL D. ABAYATEYE