The Paediatric and Child Health Unit of the Tamale Teaching Hospital in the Northern Region is in need of additional incubators to cater for the increased number of pre-term babies on admission at the facility.
The unit head, Dr Alhassan Abdul Mumuni, in an interview with the media, disclosed that the Tamale Teaching Hospital, which serves as a referral facility for the five regions up north, currently has 15 functional incubators that cater for about 25 pre-term babies on admission.
He said the lack of adequate facilities is affecting the quality of health care delivery.
“Today, we are not at our peak, so, we have two babies in most of the incubators but when we are at our peak, we can get three, sometimes, four babies in one incubator and these are not babies born from the same mother and they are not supposed to be in the same incubator because they might have a different illness and one can transfer it to each other, so, if you keep them in one incubator, the risk of infection is very high and infection is one of the lead complications that can lead to the death of pre-term babies,” he said.
The Kangaroo mother care unit, he added, has only seven beds, a situation that compels some mothers who do not get beds, to sit in chairs while taking care of their pre-term babies.
Dr Mumuni lamented the lack of accommodation for the parents on admission to take care of their babies.
“Because we don’t have space for parents, they end up sleeping around, which is a big problem because when day breaks, they have not rested enough and it can demoralise mothers and can make it difficult for them to fully participate in Kangaroo mother care of their babies,” he lamented.
He appealed to the government, philanthropists, institutions and individuals to come to the aid of the unit to enable them to provide quality health care to pre-term babies and their parents.