The Minister of Health, Mr Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, has attributed the delayed reconstruction of the La General Hospital to requests by the contractors to do additional works on the bare land before starting the project itself.
“After the sod-cutting, they decided to [do] some extra work on the place and they still decided that we need to do some more extra work. This is not the only site where we are seeing this, I can refer you to Komfo Anokye Hospital,” Mr Agyeman-Manu said when he appeared before Parliament to respond to a question posed by the MP for La Dade Kotopon, Ms Rita Naa Odoley Sowah about the delayed project.
He continued: “The little problem we have at the ministry is that not until some issues with the insurance cover is done, they cannot move to site. Finance Ministry has been informed and they are engaging that the problem would soon be resolved”.
He said since his ministry “does not control that activity, it would be difficult for me to tell when that project would be done but all I can say is that it would be done soon”.
The president cut the sod for the commencement of the La General Hospital Redevelopment Project on Tuesday, 10 August 2020.
At the ceremony, the president indicated that the redevelopment project has been occasioned by a report from the Ghana Health Service, which indicated that the five-storey structure had developed gaping cracks, which made the facility unfit for use.
Furthermore, the unplanned nature of the entire hospital campus required that it be re-organised so that it can function efficiently as a 21st-century hospital, which will serve the needs of residents of La and its adjoining communities.
“This facility, in so many ways, complements the Greater Accra Regional Hospital at Ridge, and its upgrading will serve most people from Osu through La and Teshie, as well as residents living along the coastal corridor of Accra,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo continued: “Indeed, with admissions to this hospital arising from maternal health and other related complications increasing from 20.5% in 2008 to 30% in 2017, and with pregnancy and related conditions for the first time in the history of the life of this hospital being the number one cause of admission”, there was the need to “improve, rapidly, the facilities of this hospital”.
The project is being financed by a credit facility from Standard Chartered Bank of the United Kingdom, with an export credit guarantee from Sinosure of the People’s Republic of China, to the tune €68 million, with an insurance cover of €3,860,349.18.
The project will be undertaken by the Chinese company Poly Changda, which has wide-ranging experience in China and other parts of Africa in the construction of healthcare facilities.
Upon completion, it will be transformed into a 160-bed facility and it will be fitted with an outpatient department, inpatient wards, maternity and neonatal services; surgical unit with 4 theatres, accident and emergency department; public health department, pharmacy unit, laboratory, administration, imaging area with CT Scan, X-ray room, ultrasound, fluoroscopy, mammography units, physiotherapy unit and a mortuary
To the chiefs gathered at the ceremony, the president assured them that “this project is a sign of greater things to come for La, and, indeed, for the whole nation”, adding that: “The government’s commitment to the total development of Ghana is absolute” and “I expect that all of us gathered here will be present, again, God-willing, for the commissioning of this project once it is completed.”