Health Worker Breaks Barrier In Accessing Healthcare In Rural Ghana
Ghana is known for its commendable socio-economic growth over the past few years. In fact, the recently published 2014 MasterCard African Cities Growth Index (ACGI) ranked its capital city, Accra as the city with the highest potential for inclusive growth in Africa.
However, like many rural communities all over the world, access to adequate healthcare facilities is a major problem for those living in the rural hinterland.
According to a World Health Organisation report, most rural areas in Ghana are isolated and without modern healthcare facilities.
While there has been ample progress made in Ghana health industry over the past years, public hospitals are still overcrowded while access to rural healthcare services are still a little bit inaccessible.
Sometimes, rural dwellers have to succumb to traditional healthcare services or travel a long distance to access modern healthcare.
However, the lack of healthcare centers has caused healthcare workers like 27-years old Sara Nana Yeboah to improvise on healthcare delivery system by engaging in contemporary ways to help communities tackle the challenges of combating ailments and diseases.
For Sara, delivering healthcare services to the doorsteps of the locals is one way to fill this huge gap.
She works to make healthcare services accessible for those in rural Ghana through her company Sangy Nursing Services, which provides Health education programs, health awareness programs and health screening services in a bid to reduce ignorance relating to common health conditions which often lead to unnecessary deaths.
The idea to set up a health care service was born out of her experience in providing health education/promotion and health screening program in Sunyani in the Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana, Sara told Rural Reporters.
Although she started the nursing service with about $30 (Ghc60.00) from her government salary as a Nurse; today, Sara works with a couple of nurses to render home care services, fly nurse package, health education, Pharma care, and medical outreach to various rural communities in Ghana – some of which are in the MATAHEKO, Okponglo, ASHIEYIE environs.
“Everyone deserves the best in preventive health and therefore a health intervention which is geared towards health prevention and health promotion is what we seek to apply,” she said.
Sangy Nursing Services works in line with the World Health Organization’s definition of health, which says that health is not the absence of disease, but a state of physical, mental and spiritual well-being.
While she prays for better days to help and serve humanity, Sara said eminent among the challenges faced in carrying out her duties in the local communities include poor road networks, language barrier and inadequate funds.
“But over time, we have liaised with leaders in the communities and formed strong partnerships to carry out our activities,” she maintained.
Through her foundation, The Sangy Foundation, Sara has been able to register over 600 children into the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), which was introduced by the Ghanaian government to improve health care accessibility for its poorest citizens.
Other benefits that the organisation has been able to provide include paying hospital bills for the poor, renovation of some class rooms and libraries in public schools, renovated libraries, sponsorships for needy and brilliant girls as well as mentoring and coaching sessions for girls for free.
The organisation is currently planning to sow over ten thousand school uniforms for children in rural Ghana to encourage Girl-child education.
In the future, Sara hopes to make Sangy Nursing Services “the one stop shop for health education and preventive measure for individuals and organisations across Africa.”