Burns are the scourge of Ghana and represent a huge portion of the workload for the plastic surgery and burns unit at Korle Bu teaching Hospital. Some 45% of the hospital’s burns patients are children.
Open cooking fires in the home and in the markets and poorly-regulated industries contribute to the high numbers of severely burned patients we see who require acute care. Up to 98% of the rural Ghanaian population rely on gas cylinders for cooking, with many storing these cylinders indoors. Roadside cooking over open flames is also commonplace. Many of these burns result in keloid scarring or contracture formation which leads to significant physical impairment.
Led by Korle-Bu/ReSurge Africa Director Mr Opoku Ware Ampomah, Korle-Bu were able to raise the necessary funds with the help from the Ghanaian National Petroleum company (GNPC) to realise the dream of turning Korle-Bu’s then 18 bed burns unit into a leading, ultra-modern Hub for the treatment of Burns and reconstructive plastic surgery in West Africa. In December 2018 in a vibrant and uplifting ceremony, a brand new, state-of-the-art burns ICU complex was officially commissioned by the Ghanaian President, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. Resurge Africa and a team from Canniesburn and GRI were proud to attend the ceremony. This ICU unit will transform the lives of thousands of Ghanaians, and will provide not only the much needed care for critically injured patients but will serve as a training ground for many more West African reconstructive surgeons, nurses and anaesthetists to come.
During the ceremony, the Resurge team were able to meet a young patient operated on in May 2018 by Korle-Bu reconstructive surgeon Mr Edem Anyigba. Mr Anyigba led a 10 man team in a 7 hour procedure to successfully re-attach the severed wrist of a this patient critically injured in an industrial accident. Mr Anyigba was supported by ReSurge Africa during his training and spent time at Ganga Hospital in Coimbatore, India under the guidance of Professor Raja Sabapathy. It was at Ganga where Mr Anyigba learned much about Hand surgery. We are very proud of his achievements.