The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) on Thursday presented the Burns Centre of the Korle-Bu Teaching with $1 million (GHS3.8 million) to facilitate the development of the Centre’s Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
The ICU, when completed, will be the first of its kind in West Africa, and will help increase the survival rate of burns patients from the current 40% to 80%.
The ICU will form a component of an $8 million ultra-modern Burns Centre, which will also have facilities such as: High Dependency Unit (HDP), Laboratory, Physiotherapy gym, leg ulcer clinic, modern fully-equipped consulting rooms, and laundry and sterilization unit.
Other facilities will include state of the art theatres, amenity wards, conference rooms, modern IT infrastructure with telemedicine and teleconferencing facilities, offices, and modern medical records management systems.
Presenting a dummy cheque of $1 million to the Korle-Bu Reconstructive and Plastic Surgery and Burn Unit, the CEO of GNPC, Mr Alex Mould, said his outfit had stepped forward to support the Burns centre because “the world-class team” there needed “a world-class facility”.
He said after the June 3 fire disaster at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle in Accra, in which over 100 people died, the GNPC resolved to assist the Burns Centre to upgrade its capacity.
Mr Mould said GNPC was ready to assist the Centre further to improve its teaching facilities in line with international standards.
He said the donation to the Burns Centre was a demonstration of the GNPC’s commitment to improving healthcare in the country.
He said the GNPC had earlier donated $2 million through the Ministry of Health and the Ghana Health Service to help upgrade the laboratories of the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research when Ebola broke out in West Africa last year.
Mr Mould also called on Korle-Bu to work hard to become self-sufficient. “Korle-Bu should be able to stand on its own and generate enough revenue,” he said.
The Director of the Reconstructive Plastic Surgery and Burns Unit, Dr Opoku Ware Ampomah, who received the cheque on behalf of the Centre, said by the donation, the GNPC had lived up to its motto: Empowering Dreams.
According to Mr Ampomah, the construction of the ultra-modern Burns Centre began in 2006 but had stalled for many years.
He said a lot of patients died just because they could not get access to ICU facilities.
“Many of the deaths were avoidable and the images are still fresh in my mind,” he said.
Expressing gratitude to the GNPC, Dr Ampomah said the company’s support would enable the Centre resolve some of its current challenges.
“We salute this gesture by GNPC,” he said.
For his part, The Deputy Minister for Health, Dr Victor Bampoe, expressed gratitude to the GNPC for its gesture, saying: “They’ve demonstrated that they take their corporate social responsibility seriously.”