Global Fund Hasn't Stopped Medical Supplies To Ghana - Ministry of Heath Debunks Claims

The Ministry of Health has debunked reports that the Global Fund has stopped shipping medical supplies to Ghana after some drugs were locked up at the port for months.

The Global Fund is said to have freely given Ghana some essential medicines to treat various diseases, including malaria, but these medicines stayed at the port since December last year until a public uproar compelled the Health Ministry to clear them this month on Friday, April 12.

Among the items affected, the reports indicated antiretroviral drugs for HIV/AIDS patients.

14 containers of the drugs comprising malaria and tuberculosis have been offloaded from the port, leaving the remaining 168 containers of mosquito nets, according to the Public Relations Officer of the Health Ministry, Isaac Offei Baah, in an interview with host Kwami Sefa Kayi on Peace FM's morning show "Kokrokoo".

Due to the government's inability to clear the medical supplies on time, the Global Fund is reported to have halted shipments of further supplies to Ghana, citing delays in clearing previous donations held up at the Tema Port.

The Executive Director of ACHPR&A, Dr. Thomas Anaba, in an interview on Citi FM, gave the hint saying "a 12-member delegation from the Global Fund paid a working visit to this country to follow up on the locked-up commodities. In spite of all their efforts, they did not make any headway, and the commodities still remain uncleared at the port".

He added, "They have, therefore, indicated that Ghana risks losing all Global Fund support if the government fails to act on the matter. To start with, they have already suspended all commodity shipments to the country until the ones at the ports are cleared. This development has dire consequences for the hundreds of thousands of our compatriots on free medications donated by the Global Fund."

The Ministry of Health PRO, Isaac Offei Baah, speaking to Kwami Sefa Kayi on Monday, refuted these claims stressing "it is not true".

"As we speak, there are a lot of meetings with Global Fund, even within this week. The Global Fund even gave us medicines last week, and they will give us drugs somewhere early next month. So, it is untrue that the Global Fund has issued a statement to the government that they will not give us drugs again. This is a grant to Africa of which Ghana is  part," he clarified.

He also stated emphatically that the medical supplies locked at the port never included antiretroviral drugs.