Liberia’s health sector continues to experience many challenges over the period in spite of some gains made thus far.
The latest is one of the Country’s reliable Mental Health Hospitals; the E.S. Grant Hospital situated on the Du Port Road in Paynesville which is currently battling against the over-flow of patients at that health facility.
The Hospital which is directly under the Government of Liberia through the John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital is now challenged with overcrowdiness.
According to the Chief Administrator Comfort Cooper they have a seventy bed space at that health facility but noticed an over flow of over one hundred patients weekly only to benefit from mental aid treatment something she noted is a huge task for them.
“We can’t accommodate everyone due to the challenge we are experiencing at the facility”, Comfort told our reporter.
Madam Cooper explaining further noted that Moreover and worse of all, the few patients that they are taking care of are even unable to go back to their families due to family members neglect, abandonment and their refusal to re-unite them into their respective homes due to the past destruction among others that the (Patients) caused them over the period, this she indicated is also a serious challenge for them.
Additionally, Comfort said the family members also deliberately leave their patients or family members at the mental health home on grounds that the facility is a government run area as such they (Health-Care-Workers) should take care of them, something she said they are doing but it is also a huge task because they are committed to it to the fullest especially their oath which they are under professional obligation to keep at all times.
Madam Cooper told our reporter that current patients in flow at the facility have double as they are now overwhelmed especially with the capacity of the area as such she is calling on well-meaning Liberians, members of the National Legislature, Humanitarian groupings and many others to see the need to assist the Hospital through relocation.
The E.S.Grant boss indicated further that the work that they do is very delicate noting that the patients proper care and protection is cardinal as such a conducive and spacious working environment for they and the patients will help them greatly in their daily operations.
She said mental health is not like you have been isolated as it is perceived in the public; however, she was quick to mention that it is now a serious problem for Liberia.
According to the World Health Organization Population statistics in Liberia, there are 20% mentally traumatized people in Liberia something she noted should be a cause for concern for everyone.
She said they are working hard but needs more support and proper relocation to help address some of the issues confronting their effective operations.
At the same time Madam Cooper encouraged family members not to abandon or neglect their family members due to mental health challenge especially when they are being treated or have completed their treatment respectively.
She said mental health people are humans and are protected under the public health laws and should be care for by all.
Though there are some strides been made in the health sector of Liberia to include the collective fight against the killer disease (EBOLA) the building of some new, modern health related infrastructures with modern and state of the art machines and equipment (JFK& Jackson F. Doe Hospital)and many others , increment of some health workers salaries, foreign training of some doctors, Moreover the ongoing construction of the 14th Military Hospital on the Schfflin Highway including the Redemption Hospital projects in the Township of Caldwell are all infrastructures boost to the government and Country and many others but the challenges are still visible, enormous and needs to be tackle in a timely manner, said a health care worker who bagged to be named.
Currently the doctor to patient ratio in Liberia is a serious concern, lack of essential drugs to health care facilities, budgetary constraints, capacity building of health care workers, limited as well as poor health facilities across the Country and access to major health facilities are huge challenges national government is struggling to battle with of the period as priority to the sector is key because a health people breeds a healthy nation