Okoe Boye defends lack of district hospital projects, says they are the same as polyclinics

A deputy Minister of Health, Dr. Bernard Okoe Boye, has defended the Akufo-Addo administration’s record on health infrastructure after being chided for not constructing any district hospitals.

When confronted with this fact by the National Democratic Congress National Communication Officer, Sammy Gyamfi, Dr. Boye insisted that the four polyclinics the government has constructed should count as district hospitals.

“When you say a polyclinic, it is just a name. When you say a hospital is a district hospital, it is also a name. The most important thing is that a district must be able to provide certain basic facilities,” Dr. Boye argued on The Point of View on Citi TV as the debate over infrastructure records of the current government and the NDC continued.

In the deputy Minister’s view, “a polyclinic does almost everything that a district hospital does and in some cases, a polyclinic may do more than a district hospital.”

This is despite the Ghana Health Service’s clear distinction that district hospitals provide “quality clinical care by a more skilled and competent staff than those at health centres and polyclinics.”

The service also said, “treatment techniques, such as surgery, are not available at health centres.”

Mr. Gyamfi was adamant that the lack of district hospital projects was a black mark on the Akufo-Addo administration.

“They are the only government in the history of this fourth republic who cannot boast of one district hospital,” he said on the show on Wednesday, August 26, 2020.

He recalled further that the Mahama administration constructed five polyclinics in the former Brong Ahafo Region.

“The number of polyclinics in the Brong Ahafo Region alone exceeds the number of polyclinics they claim to have completed in the whole of Ghana.”

The government says it has 673 health projects, 378 of which it says have been completed whilst 295 are ongoing, with one being a district hospital.

CHPS compounds account for the majority of the projects with 423.

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