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The management of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital has stated that the health facility would not be closed down as earlier reported in the media.

The hospital on Thursday was reported to have served a notice of a possible discharge of patients if government was not able to supply the hospitals with some materials for the care of patients.

However, according to the authorities of the hospital, the Minister of Health, Ms Sherry Ayittey, has responded to their distress call regarding funding for operating the facility.

?We are not closing down the hospital. We have a supportive minister so we know our problems will be solved,? Peter Agyemang-Gyau, deputy chief health service administrator said in an interview with DAILY GUIDE.

Mr Agyemang-Gyau, who was not happy with reports circulating in the media that the hospital had given an ultimatum to the government said, ?There is nothing in the letter we wrote to the minister which said we have given the government an ultimatum, it was a distress call made by the three psychiatric hospitals and not only Accra psychiatric hospital.?

The letter titled, ?Critical Financial Situation Facing Accra, Pantang and Ankaful Psychiatric Hospitals? which DAILY GUIDE was able get to a copy had the following excerpts, ?After the annual performance review of mental health service in the country held at Pantang hospital from 9th-10th May 2013, it came out clearly that the three psychiatric hospitals, Accra, Pantang and Ankaful psychiatric hospitals were in dire need of funds to enable them continue to offer critical and quality mental health care to patients.?

The letter further stated, ?Currently the hospitals have stocks of food items and chemicals to last them up to the end of this month after which they may have to discharge all patients, if they do not get financial support before that time.?

The statement signed by Dr Akwasi Osei, Medical Director of the Accra Psychiatric hospital indicated that some of the suppliers of the hospitals have ceased giving them supplies while the remaining few have threatened to stop doing business with them for non-payment of bills.

It further noted, ?in order to prevent a catastrophe should patients care be brought to a halt, I should be grateful if you could authorize the release of funds to the three psychiatric hospitals without further delay.

?I wish to reiterate my call for the inauguration of the mental health board of the implementation of the mental health Act to enable the realization of the benefits there in.?

The public relations officer of the Ministry of Health, Tony Goodman, said the ministry had discussed the concerns raised with the authorities of the hospital and have subsequently directed the second part of the money to be released to the hospitals.

?The first part of the money has been released to them and the minister has written to the minister of finance to release the other part,? Goodman said.

He also said President Mahama would soon approve the council of the mental health authority which would form the mental health board to help alleviate the problems facing the mental health institutions.

BY Jamila Akweley Okertchiri

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