A 20-bed medical facility, Yikine Medical Center (YMC), has been opened in Bolgatanga, the capital of the Upper East Region, with a focus on delivering quality and affordable healthcare to the people of Yikine, its adjoining communities, and the regional capital at large.
Speaking to the Upper East File after the facility was launched on Saturday March 10, 2018, its Chief Executive Officer, who doubles as the proprietor of Premier Lodge, Martin Azare, said the establishment of the medical center was to give back to society for its contribution to his hospitality business.
Mr. Azare said: “You get to a stage that all is not about money but it is about giving back to the society. When you look at my history, for the past six years, almost every year, I do something for the poor. I either feed the sick, do a party for children; I go to the prisons, or I do something for the poor, and it is not all about money. It is about giving it back to the society.”
The 20-bed medical center has an Out-Patient Department (OPD), consulting rooms, a well-equipped laboratory, a female ward, male ward and children’s ward, a dispensary and an administration block. It is also staffed with two clinicians, six nurses, a midwife, a laboratory technician and a pharmacy technician
Responding to a question about how his facility will compete with the existing facilities which are running mainly on the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Mr. Azare said plans are afoot for the center to be placed on the scheme, but as a requirement, the center must operate ‘cash and carry’ for a period, in order for the regulatory authority of the scheme – National Health Insurance Authority – to monitor its services and performance, and if it meets the requirements, approval will then be given.
“They have given us time they will come and inspect our facility and then hook us up to it. But up until then, we are going to do a cash and carry system. But, trust me, it is going to be very affordable.”
“I have seen the standards rates for health insurance. We are even planning to beat it down and make it accessible, affordable for the poor to come and receive quality, affordable health care. We will get hooked to the health insurance with time. It is a procedural thing,” he added.
As part of plans to expand, the CEO said management had ordered for an X-ray machine, which is yet to be delivered.
Rev. Lazarus Akaburi of Assemblies of God Redemption Center in Bolgatanga, who dedicated the facility, charged the staff to show love and care to their patients, because these are basic principles in healthcare delivery that contribute immensely to the healing of patients.
He also admonished them to ensure maintenance of the facility and its equipment for efficient delivery.
There was a free screening during the launching.
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