General News of Wed, 12 Dec 20185

Suspend planned drone services – GMA to government

The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has called on government to suspend the implementation of the planned distribution of blood and other essential health services by drones.

The association says although it was not consulted before the drone agreement was signed by the government, it feels compelled to express its views on the development.

Parliament Tuesday approved the controversial Drone Delivery Project agreement between the government of Ghana and Zipline Ghana Limited.

The agreement was approved by 102 to 58 votes.

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To be implemented by the Ghana Health Service and the Health Ministry in close partnership with Zipline Ghana Limited, the project will involve the usage of drones to distribute blood and other essential medicines to hard-to-reach communities across the country.

The estimated total 4-year cost of the contract is approximately $12million.

In a statement on the development, the GMA said: “The proposed services to be provided by the drones do not conform to the primary healthcare policy in Ghana where different levels of care have different capacities to perform specific functions.

“The use of drones without the necessary improvement in the human resource capacity will not inure to the benefit of the country in its quest to improve healthcare delivery,” The GMA said.

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