The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) on Friday expressed its disillusion and dismay about the action and directive given by the Minister of Health asking a doctor and a nurse at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) to proceed on leave as a result of a missing baby.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency in a telephone interview, the GMA President, Dr Kwabena Opoku-Adusei described the Health Minister’s directive as “unnecessary, unfortunate and of no consequence”.
“We live in a democratic dispensation with rules and regulations,” and expected the Minister to have discussed the Ministry’s findings with the hospital’s management before disclosing it to the media.
He noted that the doctors of KATH will from henceforth, based on the directive from the Ministry of Health, attend to only three patients in a day as demanded by international standards.
“The doctors will not take an undue risk for them to be punished should there be any mishap”, he added.
The Ministry of Health has directed KATH to produce five stillborns that occurred at the hospital within 14 working days, whilst the doctor and the nurse who were on duty to proceed on leave and appear before the ethics and disciplinary committees of their respective Councils for investigations.
Mrs Suwaiba Mumuni, 42, was on February 4, 2014 referred to the KATH labour ward from Amaamata Memorial Maternity Clinic for post dated pregnancy with four days history of premature rupture of membranes.
Doctors upon observation recorded the presence of fetal heart beat of 142 beats per minute, which was regular but the midwife on duty on the other hand could not establish fetal heart beats.
Mrs Munmuni delivered on February 5th, but the child was said to have been stillborn.
The stillborn was then labeled and put in a box with two other stillborn babies to be handed over to the morgue officials, but when the relatives of Mrs Mumuni arrived at the hospital for collection of the stillborn baby it was nowhere to be found.
This provoked the relatives and resulted in a mob action that saw three doctors being attacked, leading to the arrest of two relatives of Suwaiba by the Police.
This incident has generated a lot of tension between the hospital and the zongo community where Mrs Mumuni hailed from. The two who were arrested are currently being prepared for court.