In 2009, the Chalker Foundation supported the development of the AfriKids Medical Centre (AMC) in Bolgatanga, Northern Ghana by funding the training of eight Ward Aides. The Medical Centre offers a combination of private and public healthcare and is staffed by a dedicated team of local people. It is the fastest growing sustainability project of the Charity AfriKids and has faced the challenge of a rapid increase in patient numbers and demand for services. To cope with this growth, the Centre urgently needed to train staff. On the recommendation of Dr Nwosu, the head doctor at the AMC, AfriKids put together a six month course to train Ward Aides to work alongside the doctors and nurses at the Centre. The programme included a two-week placement at a regional hospital and was designed to equip the trainees with the necessary skills for working in the laboratory, ward and outpatients unit.
The training programme has been a success and all eight of the trainees were offered a three-year employment contract as Ward Aides and are now working at the centre. This means that the doctors and nurses are now able to focus their essential life-saving skills on clinical work that only they can perform.
In their own words, here is some feedback we have had from the Medical Centre’s administrator and Ward Aides:
“The program has immensely impacted on the performance of the health centre in the following areas:
- Clients no more spend long queues at the Out Patients Department.
- The Doctors in the Consulting Room have been relieved of pressure from patients since the ward aids are now available to assist.
- Work in the theatre has improved ever since some of the aids started assisting the doctors during operations.
- The ward aids have helped provide hope and relief for patients with severe cases as well as the aged and pregnant women with complications since they assist in identifying these categories of patients and refer them for immediate treatment. The program as a whole has helped increased productivity at the Medical Centre. In fact we owe the financiers of the program much gratitude. Thank you.”
-Felix Atale, Medical Centre Administrator. February 2010.
“It was my desire to be a health worker and this training gave me the opportunity to be what I dreamed and wished to be.”-Moses Apambila, Ward Aide
“I assist nurses to give treatment in the wards. I take vital signs.” – Martina Abua, Ward Aide
” It was my desire to be a health worker and this training gave me the opportunity to be what I dreamed and wished to be “
– Moses Apambila, Ward Aide (January 10)