Effia-Nkwanta Hospital patients frustrated over pharmacists strike action

Technicians at the Effia-Nkwanta Regional Hospital in Takoradi are helping in the dispensing of drugs at the facility’s Pharmacy Unit following the strike action by pharmacists over salary disputes.

A reliable source at the hospital disclosed to the Ghana News Agency and explained that the authorities want to avoid a situation where patients would leave the hospital without taking their medication.

When the Ghana News Agency visited the hospital on Wednesday, patients were seen waiting anxiously in long queues at the forecourt of the Dispensary Unit of the Hospital in the scorching sun waving their prescription forms for attention.

A 55-year-old patient, Madam Ekua Essoun, who showed her prescription form to the GNA, lamented that she had been waiting for hours to be served.

When contacted, the Medical Director of the Hospital, Dr Paul Nkwaw Ntodi, said he just resumed work after a three-week absence and would respond appropriately after assessing the situation.

The Western Regional Chairman of the Government and Hospital Pharmacists Association (GOSPA), Mr. Oscar Amissah, said though  arbitration between the National Labour Commission (NLC) and the Fair Wages and Salary commission (FWSC) was on-going “we have been directed by our leadership to continue with the strike action”.

Mr. Amissah explained  that they were firm with their stance because nothing meaningful came out of their previous meetings with the FWSC .

“We provide a number of services such as counseling patients on rational use of drugs, valid interpretation of drug prescriptions, clinical and diabetic services, compounding, in-house manufacturing of medicines, among many other services”, he added.

The Regional GOSPA Chairman stressed that pharmacists played a crucial role in dispensation of drugs at public health facilities therefore government must treat their concerns with dispatch.

Source: GNA

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