Ghana Coalition of Non-Governmental Organisations (CONIWAS) has hinted that millions of patients who go to health facilities to seek healthcare rather come home with more illness than what they reported at the various facilities.
According to the Coalition the scary situation at the various healthcare facilities had come about as a result of lack of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) at the various health centers.
The Coalition made this horrifying revelation when it met members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Works and Housing in Accra to discuss issues affecting the WASH in schools and health facilities across the country.
Data available shows that nearly 30% of health care facilities lack a basic water services while 17% lack improved sanitation services.
The risk posed by the inadequate access to safe water and improved sanitation is corroborated by two local level reports in 2016 by Ghana Health Service (GHS)/ UNICEF and 2018 by WaterAid Ghana.
Addressing members at the forum, CONIWAS Chairperson, Mr. Martin Dery explained that inadequate WASH in healthcare facilities presents a major challenge to quality healthcare delivery in Ghana.
CONIWAS believes that no one should go to a healthcare facility to get sick, thus every effort should be made to address the WASH shortfalls. “People go to get better; women go to deliver babies or to get vaccinated. Yet hundreds of millions of people face an increased risk of infection by seeking care in health facilities that lack basic necessities, including water, sanitation, hygiene, healthcare waste management and cleaning (WASH) services.
Not only does the lack of WASH services in health care facilities compromise patient safety and dignity, it also has the potential to exacerbate the spread of antimicrobial-resistant infections and undermines efforts to improve child and maternal health”. It stated.
The Coalition maintained that ensuring universal access to WASH services in health care facilities is a solvable problem with a return on investment.
Story: Franklin ASARE-DONKOH
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