NPRA Constructs Canteen Facility for Accra Psychiatric Hospital
As part of the Corporate Social Responsibilities of the National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA), the leadership of the Authority has commissioned a canteen facility for the staff and patients of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital at Ridge in Accra.
Speaking at the commissioning of the facility, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NPRA, Mr. Hayford Attah Krufi, recounted that On the 15th of October, last year, the then Board Chairman, Mr. Paul S. M. Koranteng, and Board Members of the NPRA cut sod to start the construction of this facility for staff and patients of this hospital.
According to him, he believes his outfit’s little contribution to the Accra Psychiatric Hospital will help lessen some of their plights. He added that the NPRA chose to construct the canteen as part of their 10th Anniversary which was held last year.
“Our choice of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital for this project is obvious. The hospital and its operations are so dear to us, as an Authority, furthermore we are neighbors, by way of, proximity. We are all aware that in recent years, the delivery of mental health services in Ghana has expanded substantially, especially since the passing of the Mental Health Act in 2012. This has brought some pressure on facilities in mental health institutions in the country including this very one”.
The CEO also mentioned that he was saddened by the news that a hospital that was established in 1904 did not have a canteen hence the move by the NPRA.
He further explained that the over 700 staff and over 100 visitors had to go outside the walls to find food for themselves, a situation he believed thwarts the smooth progress of work. “I am particularly happy therefore that I am leading Management of the NPRA to help solve this 117-year-old problem of this hospital. The canteen will serve as a long-lasting solution to the challenges faced by both staff and patients as well as visitors to have easy access to a healthy and nutritious meal daily. The issue of staff going outside the four walls of the hospital for food, I believe, will be a thing of the past.”
Mr. Krufi also noted that as Regulators of the pensions industry in the country, with a mission to ensure retirement income security for all Ghanaians, it is their quest to ensure good mental health and wellbeing of the citizenry.
Reading a speech on behalf of the Hospital Director for Accra Psychiatric Hospital, the Administrator, Julius Kuu Salifu hinted that instead of some family members coming to check up on their relatives on admission, they are rather ready and willing to come for the remains of their beloved should any pass away.
It is emerging that a patient on admission at the Forensic Ward has been at the hospital for over 45 years.
“No one is immune to mental health disorders. Indeed, the WHO estimates that mental health disorders constitute about 14% of the global disease burden and around 20% of the world’s children and adolescents have Mental Health conditions”.
Mr. Salifu also explained that stigma and discrimination can make mental health problems worse and stop a person from getting the needed help.
The Minister for Employment and Labour Relations, Honorable Ignatius Baffour Awuah also commended the leadership of NPRA for their kind gesture. He tasked the Authorities at the Accra Psychiatric Hospital to take good care of the canteen.
The Executive Officer of the Mental Health Authority, Professor Kwasi Osei thanked the leadership of NPRA for thinking about the hospital. He added that he is confident staff and visitors will make good use of the canteen.