Liberia: Ganta Methodist Hospital Resumes Full Operation

— Introduces modern heart testing equipment, others

The Ganta United Methodist Hospital has resumed full operations following a recent staff protest that briefly halted its services. Hospital Administrator Allen Zomoway told the Daily Observer that all operations are back on track, with efforts underway to address any outstanding salary arrears for the staff.

After negotiations with the management, the workers’ union concluded their strike action on February 20, 2023. The strike began on February 16, 2024, due to a delay in settling two months' worth of salaries, along with other grievances related to compensation and management conduct.

During the negotiation, the workers’ union outlined several issues, ranging from low salaries, the administrator’s continued disrespect to the workers, salary advance, timely payment of salary, and other benefits.

While the management cited financial challenges for not considering salary increments, they were committed to resolving the issues and ensuring timely payment of salaries going forward.

Mr. Zomoway explained that normal work is going to the hospital, while the management is doing everything to meet its obligation, ensuring all the salary arrears are settled soon.

Additionally, the hospital has introduced modern medical equipment, including an EKG machine and ultrasound machines, to facilitate enhanced heart and overall body examinations. The presence of advanced medical equipment aims to improve diagnostic capabilities within the hospital and reduce the need for patients to seek certain tests elsewhere.

“Our partner in Germany sent some medical pieces of equipment, including one ‘EKG machine and two giant-size ultrasound machines,” said Mr. Zomoway.

“We have two portable ultrasound machines in this hospital, but these new types are more advanced and they can print images, similar to an X-ray machine,” he said.

The ‘EKG’ machine is new in the hospital. It is mainly used to test the heartbeat, according to Zomoway.

“Many patients have been referred to other hospitals for ‘EKG’ tests, but we are happy to get one here,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Administrator Zomoway highlighted the significance of these additions in enhancing healthcare services. Zomoway also appealed to the government to increase financial support to the hospital, emphasizing the hospital’s crucial role in providing healthcare services to not only local communities but also individuals from neighboring countries. The plea for increased subsidy reflects the hospital’s continued efforts to sustain its operations and serve a broader population.

“This hospital shouldn’t only be considered as a faith-based hospital, because it serves people from across the Mano River basin, especially Guinea, Ivory Coast as well as other counties,” he said.

“The intake from this hospital cannot sustain this hospital anymore, because not everybody who comes here can afford to pay their hospital bill,” he said.