Children with special needs need expedited healthcare services

Ghana Health Service

Some parents of children with disabilities have called on the Family Health Division of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) to extend expedited services given to children with Autism to all children with disabilities.

The parents, in a discussion on the issue on the Special Mothers Project platform, argued that all children with disabilities had some special needs and needed expedited healthcare services because, waiting in queues at hospitals was very stressful and frustrating.

The Special Mothers Project is an advocacy and awareness creation programme on cerebral palsy issues and issues affecting families raising children with special needs.

Ms Agnes Tieko Nyemi-Tei, a mother of a child with Down Syndrome and Founder of Todah Connect Foundation, an organization that supports persons with Down syndrome said: “It is not easy taking any child or even an adult with disability to the hospital and if the GHS can provide expedite services for such persons, it will be very good.”

She urged the GHS to also provide special cards for all children with disabilities and special needs for expedited services at health facilities as being done for the Autism community.

Adwoa Okorewaa, a mother of a child with cerebral palsy, who also shared her experiences, said, it was very discomforting carrying her “big” eight-year-old child at her back scouting for services at hospitals.

She said to even feed a child with cerebral palsy was a daunting task requiring a lot of time, and that she was never able to access government hospitals because she had to go early in the morning to queue, something almost impossible for her.

Ms Okorewaa said she resorted to going to private health facilities, which many could not afford.

The Special Mothers Project platform has about 257 members on WhatsApp, consisting of families raising children with cerebral palsy and other disabilities, health and allied professionals and counselors.

The Ghana Health Service Family Health Division on the 11th of November, issued a statement directing all its facilities to offer expedite services to children with Autism.

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