Tamale Teaching Hospital’s debt rises to GH¢3.6m
The debt of the hospital was compounded by investments in staff incentive packages, rental of private accommodation for staff, rehabilitation and maintenance of existing structures and others expenditure.
Dr. Ken Sagoe, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the TTH, raised these concerns in Tamale on Friday during the familiarization tour of the Minister of Health Mr. Alban Bagbin to the facility.
He said the hospital in 2008, had only 26 medical doctors, therefore, it embarked on a search for more doctors.
However, because of inadequate accommodation, the hospital had to rent private apartments for almost all its current 120 doctor.
He stated that accommodation cost for the staff alone stood at about GH¢1,000,000, explaining that when he assumed duty in 2008 as the CEO, the hospital was already owed GH¢1.4 million with some of the debts dating back to 2006.
Dr. Sagoe said the Government this year released GH¢750,000 to clear some of its debts but that amount could only settle a little of the bigger chunk.
He also said the hospital did not have an efficient transportation system with only two pick-ups.
Erratic electricity and water supply to the hospital was making it difficult to meet the needs of the teaching hospital, he said, and called for the Ministry’s intervention.
Despite the huge debts, the CEO expressed optimism that the hospital was determined to be the centre of excellence of a maternal and infant health in the country as it would extend outreach programmes to the entire region.
Dr. Sagoe said the hospital, since its establishment in the 1970’s, had only 340 beds but after the ongoing rehabilitation, the bed capacity would rise to 400.
But it would still be short of the minimum of 600-bed-capacity for a teaching hospital, he said and appealed to the Government to undertake a third phase to augment the bed’s capacity.
He noted that basic equipments for all the departments of the hospital were inadequate and expressed disappointment about serious encroachment on the hospital’s lands.
He appealed to the Ministry to fence the walls of the hospital to prevent further encroachment.
Mr. Bagbin for his part, assured the hospital authorities that all the problems relating to the hospital would be addressed in due course.
He urged the staff of the various health facilities in the country to be duty-bound and attend to the needs of patients at all times with the maximum urgency it deserves.
He announced that all the teaching hospitals would soon benefit from a cancer treatment center with the first to be established at the TTH.
Mr. Bagbin later commissioned two mobile clinic vans for the hospital, being the first of its kind nationwide, saying, the vans would extend healthcare to the remote communities to render general services to the people at their doorsteps.