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An Analysis of Emergency Healthcare Delivery in Ghana: Lessons from Ambulance and Emergency Services in Bibiani Anhwiaso Bekwai District

R Adamtey
Josephine Frimpong
Romanus D Dinye


This paper explores the benefits of planning a reliable and effective ambulance and emergency service towards healthcare delivery at the District level in Ghana. It addresses the question of what should be the focus of such  planning. A case study research design was adopted by employing detailed qualitative interviews with health  staff, operators of ambulance services, police officers, victims of accident and emergency and private  transport operators in the Bibiani-Anhwiaso-Bekwai District. The study found that ambulance and emergency services were not effective and efficient due to poor planning. Other factors include the negative perception  that ambulances carry dead bodies, the demand for payment before patients are transported by ambulances, high cost of fuel, inadequate number of ambulances and the failure of emergency patients to pay the agreed  hospital bills and services. The study recommends public education on the ambulance and emergency services to rid off false perceptions. Planning must also explore how a district emergency fund can be set up to help alleviate the heavy financial burdens on patients and their families. Additionally, planning initiatives must promote the safety of accident and emergency victims by increasing the fleet of ambulance and emergency vehicles, improving upon the telephone and communication facilities and the training of more ambulance and health staff.

Keywords: Ambulance, Emergency Services, Healthcare, Planning, Ghana

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eISSN: 0855-6768
print ISSN: 0855-6768