Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Volunteers Get Acquainted With Tema General Hospital in Ghana

As we drove through the gates of Tema General Hospital (TGH) we were amazed with the vast campus before us. Tema, is located approximately 30km from the capital city of Accra. TGH is a 200 bed hospital that serves a catchment area of 400,000 residents. The campus spreads over 10 acres and includes numerous buildings that house both inpatient and outpatient services.

Our first day was spent introducing our team of three Project HOPE volunteers and Lieutenant Kazmer Meszaros of the U.S. Navy, to the staff of TGH. We were welcomed with open arms into the hospital by Ms. Magdalene Ayettey, the director of nursing services, Ms. Patience Mamattah, the hospital administrator, and Dr. Charity Sarpong, the medical superintendent.

As we toured the facility we were overwhelmed with the sheer number of patients waiting to see one of the various providers. TGH sees over 500 adults in their outpatient department daily, as well as over 70 children in their outpatient pediatric department. Compounding these numbers was the amazing sight of over 150 newborns and their mothers waiting to see the midwives for their 2 week well baby check. The mothers were striking in their traditional white and black dresses, which we were told symbolizes their joy and thanks for a healthy delivery. The babies looked content nursing and amazingly not a cry was heard.

Tomorrow we look forward to meeting our emergency department counterparts at TGH and beginning our assessment of TGH’s emergency response capabilities, mass casualty operations, and health care provider skill sets.

Thanks for reading--Elise Chamberlain and Marley Gevanthor

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