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Before the New Patriotic Party government took over the governance of this nation, hospitals across the nation were faced with woefully inadequate hospital facilities.
The pay structure for health workers was nothing to talk about. This triggered an unprecedented exodus of Ghanaian health professionals to Europe and elsewhere.
However, owing to the sterling leadership of President Kufuor, a region by region comparison from the year 2000 to 2005 in terms of hospital beds shows a dramatic increment in the facility across the nation.
In 2000, for example, the Ashanti region had 2,054 hospital beds. It increased to 2,464 in 2001, and jumped to 2,574 the following year. The number of beds did not improve in 2003, but it significantly increased to 3,177 in 2004 and had a slight addition of 85 beds to make it 3,182 in 2005.
In the Brong Ahafo region, for the year 2000, its hospitals had 1,077 beds. The number increased to 1,293 in 2001. Though there was no incremental change in the number of beds in the following year, the regional hospitals experienced a slight addition in 2003 to 1,361, showing an increase of 68 beds for that period.
The figure also saw another significant increment to 1,395 in 2004, with an addition of 34 beds. However in the year 2005, as many as 204 beds were added to the regions number of beds to make health delivery very convenient for patients and health care professionals.
In the Central Region, the number of hospital beds in the year 2000, were 1,380. When the NPP took over, the figure shot up to 1,458 in 2003, and slightly edged up to 1,490 the following year. In the year 2003, the number of hospital beds in the region did not experience any incremental change at all.
The figure 1,490 was maintained. However, in 2004, it improved to 1,550. This indicated an increase of 140 beds, increasing to 1,578 in the subsequent year.
In the Eastern Region, in the year 2000, the number of hospital beds was 2,214.
The figure reduced slightly to 2,211 the following year and experienced a minor increase to 2,330 in the year 2002.
In 2003, 37 beds were added to the number for it to increase to 2,367.
In the year 2004, the regions hospital beds enjoyed another minimal increase to 2,464 and had 62 bed additions to increase its number to 2,524 for the period. Compared to the regions mentioned above, the Greater Accra, which is incidentally the capital, had 2,517 beds in 2000. The figure increased dramatically by 560 beds to 3097 in 2001.
However, in 2002, the number of beds in the region reduced by 187 beds to record 2,910 beds for the period. The figure was maintained the following year and enjoyed another significant decrease to 2,814 in the year 2004; and in 2005, the region recorded a total number of 3,029 beds to shake off the hitches staff undergo in the performance of their duties.
The Northern region, which is characterised by poor infrastructural development, had only 790 hospitals in 2000. It experienced a slight increase to 995 in 2002 and maintained the same number of beds in 2003.
In 2004, however, the number of beds in the region saw an insignificant increase of 31 beds to record 1,026 and in the following year had a top-up of 8 beds.
The Upper East Region, also another victim of woeful infrastructural development, had 642 beds in 2000. The figure increased to 658 the following year and reduced by a bed to 657 in 2002. The figure was unchanged in 2003, but recorded an increase of 65 beds to climb up to 722 in 2004; and in 2005, the region had 764 beds for that period.
The Upper West Region was endowed with 621 beds in the year 2000. The figure increased to 624 in 2001, and experienced further improvement to more to 641 the following year. In 2003, the number of beds in the region recorded only one bed addition to increase its figure from 641 to 642.
In 2004, however, the Upper West Region chalked minimal increase in the quantity of beds by 40 to more up to 682 but, in the subsequent year, the figure remained unchanged.
The Volta Region, which had 2,050 beds in the year 2000, experienced a slight improvement to 2,108 in 2001.
In the year 2002, the number of beds in the region reduced marginally to 2,082. In 2003, the Volta Region further enjoyed a slight increase in the number of beds from 2,082 to 2,169. The figure was boosted by 31 beds to increase to 2,201 in 2004; in 2005, the number of beds for the region increased to 2,224.
The Western Region had 1,308 beds in 2000, before the NPP took over the reins of government.
The figure reduced to 1,263 in 2001 and shot up to 1,529 the following year. In 2003, the figure of 1,529, which was for the previous year, was maintained. However, in 2004, the number of hospital beds in the region increased from 1,529 to 1,707 and further shot up to 1,804 in 2005.
The total regional figures for the 2000 was 14,653 beds - 16,073 for 2001 and 16,501 in 2002. In the year 2003, the number of beds in the country was 16,694. The next year saw a significant increase to 17,731 in 2004. It further went up to 18,420 in 2005.
A critical analysis of this report vividly demonstrates how this government has worked tirelessly and assidiously to improve, not only the quality of life through better pay for medical workers and facilities to enable them give of their best, but also improved the socio-economic welfare of this nation.
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