Ghana witnessed a demonstration dubbed “Fix the Country” on the 4th of August, among other reasons, organizers and people who joined in this demonstration believes that the country lacks effective leadership.
Some said people in political offices have not demonstrated leadership enough, others are against the building of the National Cathedral which has become topical and many said there was hardship.
While I agree partly with the reasons assigned by the organizers of the Fix the Country demonstration, I have from the first day of the Fix the country, fix yourself debate, believed that we should be discussing how to fix ourselves as a people.
I believe that when we are able to effectively fix ourselves, it will automatically translate into fixing the country and I will give an explanation into that soon.
Just recently, I witnessed a situation at the 37 Military Hospital that got me traumatized. A single mother of a nine-year-old with cerebral palsy, said her child was having continuous seizures. This child was admitted to the hospital, I happen to visit this mother two times at the hospital.
Every time I visited, the child was having a seizure, the first time I visited was when they were first admitted, the second time was a week after admission.
During my second visit, I met the young man having a serious seizure which resulted in him biting his tongue and blood oozing out of his mouth. I was shaken because, the nurses present seems to be at their wits end.
I spoke with all three nurses present and their response was we are trying to get a doctor to come, I was in the hospital for 20 minutes and even at the time I was leaving, the young man was having the seizure.
I visited this mother because she approached me for help. I run a not-for-profit advocacy organization that supports children with cerebral palsy and their families, while at the hospital, I took a video of the boy having a seizure, my thoughts were to ask for prayer support for this young man since the medics seems to be at their wits end and also to see if through the power of social media, we could link them to a specialist.
The hospital staff on seeing the video on Facebook threatened the mother of the young man to blackmail me to pull the video down with a simple reason that I mentioned the hospital and also mentioned that there was no doctor.
The truth is there was no doctor to attend to the helpless child, whether the “no doctor” was intentional or not, I cannot judge but the attitude of the hospital about the video on social media made me feel something was wrong.
Perhaps, nurses were not doing something right, they didn’t give the care they were supposed to give or something and they were using threats to cover up their wrong attitude. Their wrong attitude which needs fixing.
So, if government fix the healthcare situation in the country by completing the 88 hospitals and the staff in the hospital have an “I don’t care about you attitude” the healthcare situation will still not be fixed.
It is common knowledge that Ghana have some very good laws, but those laws remain on paper, it doesn’t get implemented. The person employed by government to ensure the implementation of the law, perhaps benefits from the law not working and so will ensure that the law does not work.
I appreciate health workers very much for the yeoman’s job they do especially in this Covid era but in a situation where a health care worker looks on for an innocent child to die because they are at their wits end and nothing pushed them to show an iota of care to a suffering child and mother, no, it is a fix yourself situation.
A day after the incident, I woke up and during my morning meditation, I prayed: “Oh God, May I and my family members not be at the mercy of our health care system, May I have enough money to afford healthcare at Euracare or healthcare in a developed country where I believe that the healthcare personnel employed to work there is obliged to show a bit of care about my pain.”
I am of the firm believe that if as many of as possible made a decision to fix ourselves by doing the right thing, doing what we are paid to do, respecting human beings no matter the status or “class” we think they are, it will have done a greater part of fixing the country.
I will not hesitate to join a fix yourself demonstration any day
Author: Hannah Awadzi
Executive Director: Special Mothers Project
(Advocacy on cerebral palsy issues)