The Member of Parliament of Asuogyaman, Thomas Ampem Nyarko has bailed out four patients detained at the Volta River Authority (VRA) Hospital at Akosombo after their inability to pay their medical bills.
The patients include new mothers who delivered through cesarean section after complications during labor.
The MP upon hearing the plight of the patients delegated the Constituency Secretary of the National Democratic Congress, Bright Sikanku to make a total payment of GH₵ 4,356.00 to settle the medical bills.
The practice of detaining people in the hospital for the non-payment of medical bills is common in secondary and tertiary healthcare facilities in Ghana.
But for the intervention of the MP, the patients would have spent the Christmas and new year at the hospital.
The Medical Director of the Hospital Dr. Akoto Ampaw with the media in Koforidua disclosed that a total of four hundred and thirty-one (431) patients treated and discharged at the Eastern Regional Hospital between January and June this year who could not pay their medical bills were detained.
“As a policy in this Hospital, we save lives before we look at money so even if you don’t have money we will take care of you. so these patients requested for deferred payment which some have paid but the majority have not which is quite problematic,” he said.
Management of the hospital says the hospital lost about Ghc350,000 in 2018 to about 75 poor and needy patients who could not pay their Medical bills hence absconded while some 212 signed undertaken to pay their bills in instalments.