Kuapa Kokoo has responded to the health needs of its farmers by providing free medical screening to 680 cocoa farmers at Sefwi Akontombra and its surrounding communities in the Western North Region.
46 of the farmers were attended to by the farmer-based organisation’s team of specialist surgeons for free surgeries.
32 of the surgeries were for hernias, four for breast lumps, two for fibroids, four for Hydrocoeles, and four for Lipomas and Ganglions.
Sic of the surgeries were also done on children for various conditions.
The surgeries, fully funded by Kuapa Kokoo, were conducted in conjunction with the Dadieso Government Hospital. The event took place at the precinct of the hospital.
National President of Kuapa Kokoo, Madam Fatima Ali, and Managing Director of Kuapa Kokoo, Mr Samuel Adimado, explained in an interview that the event formed part of the farmer-based organisation’s corporate social responsibility to the farmers and the community it operates in.
They believe that healthy farmers will be more productive, hence, the medical outreach.
The medical team, headed by Dr Fred Bedzrah, a Specialist Family Physician, also includes two specialist surgeons, one Ophthalmologist, one Dentist, two Anesthesiologists, one Pharmacist, Dispensary Technicians, Nurses and other allied health staff.
Commenting on the event, Dr Bedzrah observed that the three-day screening exercise has largely highlighted problems associated with non-use of Personal Protective Equipment by the farmers while working.
“Eye problems, respiratory conditions and musculoskeletal and nerve problems are rife amongst them, due possibly to their improper handling of chemicals including weedicides and insecticides,” Dr Bedzrah explained.
He also added that hernias are a common occupational hazard for the farmers due to improper lifting techniques they employ in their work.
He said the team will scale-up its awareness raising campaign on these conditions and also increase farmer participation in cooperative issues.
Kuapa Kokoo is Ghana’s pioneer and the leading producer of ethical cocoa beans. Established in 1993 with 2000 farmers, KKFU currently has over 100,000 registered farmers across Ghana. KKFU has various certifications including FairTrade, UTZ and Rainforest Alliance.
KKFU seeks to become a leading, caring, efficient and the most globally recognised cooperative in cocoa production and marketing in Ghana.
Story: Freeman KORYEKPOR AWLESU
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