Unused NHS equipment heading to Ghana

Hospital staff organising and assisting with the transfer of the equipment. (S)
Hospital staff organising and assisting with the transfer of the equipment. (S)

A hospital in Ghana will benefit from unused NHS medical equipment with the continuation of a donation partnership this winter.

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust has previously sent unused mortuary equipment to St Joseph’s Hospital in Ghana in December 2014 which paved the way for developing a pathology laboratory.

The latest shipment of equipment arrived in Africa in December and James Maguire, Head of Estates at the Trust, is flying out to help with the installation of the equipment and completion of the mortuary on February 6th.

As with the previous trip the donation of this equipment will prove incredibly helpful to the small African community.

The hospital itself is run by monks and is a strictly not for profit organisation, aiming to deliver help and aid to the poorest in the community.

Some of those within the community cannot instantly afford the funeral costs and bodies have to be left at the hospital for months at a time in extreme cases. The new mortuary will allow the bodies to be kept in a safe and humane way.

The hospital has the capacity for 300 beds but currently only has 165, so a lot of the beds East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust has sent will help fill that empty space and allow the hospital to care for more of the local population.

In Ghana, Mr Maguire will lend his expertise to the project through planning and helping develop local management skills and it is anticipated he will also assist with installation of the equipment itself.

He said: “The equipment that we’ve sent over to Ghana couldn’t be used by East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust but is still in working order so Ghana is a great destination.

“It was upsetting to see children that only had a towel on the floor to lie on last time I was in Ghana, so to see all the extra beds in the hospital will be fantastic.

“I’m excited to go back and see some of the friends that I made on the last trip. They are a really passionate group of people and I’m really proud to be involved with the project which helps thousands of people in Ghana.”