“Zero Maternal Mortality Project” is an ambitious mission that started a few years ago and is now almost a reality. To fight infant mortality in the district and to reduce the risk of cross-infection, St. Francis Xavier Hospital in Assin Foso (Ghana), the centre of Sisters Hospitallers in the country, is building a new maternity Unit, budgeted at £882,000, because the previous facility was quite old, small, inadequate and obsolete.
Since the start in 2012, we have had many difficulties to face with no luck in obtaining subsidies, so finally, we risked starting with our small savings by doing the work in phases. The present project is a great need because the existing maternity unit has become obsolete and does not meet the necessary conditions for quality health care. In addition, there is not enough space for the number of beds required, estimated at forty-eight. We aim to improve the quality of care of patients and have an adequate structure for its operation. The facility needs to join prenatal, postnatal, obstetrics and gynaecology services, as well as other necessary functions such as laboratory and operating theatres.
It is the only hospital structure that exists in the whole area (North and South Assin, Adansi and Twifo Praso). Maternity is one of the units most used in the hospital. This Unit is used not only by patients from our district of Assin but also as the reference hospital of the surrounding districts. In recent years the hospital has been adapting to the growing needs of society, as well as to the requirements of Ghana’s health authorities. The units of medicine, surgery, paediatrics and operating rooms, and neonatal have been re-built.
The new building has three floors:
- Basement: an area dedicated to prenatal care and postnatal care, -prenatal consultations, palpitation room, examination room, vaccinations, cafeteria, offices for doctors, midwives and nurses, public health director, and a lounge for workers, etc.
- Ground floor: obstetrician delivery room, resuscitation room, neonatal nurses control, incubators and special care, offices, meeting room, stores, and theatres.
- First floor: gynaecology rooms, nursing control, warehouses, offices, etc.
The project contributes to reducing child mortality in the district of Assin North (Central Region, Ghana) by improving the global care capacity of the St. Francis Xavier Hospital.
Given the rapid population and the success of the recent Social Security System implemented in Ghana, the current maternity hospital is obsolete. It fails to comply with the necessary standards of quality. So we now intend to carry out the construction of a better-prepared unit, with a capacity for forty-eight patients, which will allow better care and a reduction in mortality rates.
How are patients being treated at present?
The service for pregnant mothers has been carried out in the existing department, although the need for renewal is urgent. So we need to get funds to build the new unit that will stop emergency maternity cases interrupting the rest of the hospital activities, such as scheduled surgeries and other emergencies that need attention in the operating theatres.
What we expect from the new Unit
- 48 patients can be treated.
- 7 beds available for delivery.
- A better response to the excessive demand for beds that currently exists.
- Reduction in the high risk of cross-infection
- Reduction of infant mortality in the district.
- An improvement in privacy in healthcare.
- Offering good quality care in optimal conditions.
- Improvement in the health of pregnant women in the district of Assin North.