By Peter Tah and Njoka Divine
An ultramodern structure erected at Ekoumdoum to host Ekounou Baptist Health Centre in Yaounde has been officially opened for use. The new building constructed under the Strategy Nine Projects Package (S9PP) with funding (loan) from the French Development Agency (AFD) is instrumental in the provision of health care to many more Cameroonians and even to people across the borders.
The dedication of the new building and staff to God Almighty on July 6, 2018, took place in an event that was heavily attended by the population of Ekoumdoum, Ekounou Baptist Health Centre staff, and both Cameroon Baptist Convention (CBC) and CBC Health Services leaders. This high-level event was equally marked by the installation of Mr. Kadzem Claude and Mrs. Nkeh Jenny as new Assistant Administrator and Supervisor of Nursing Services, respectively, for the health center.
Speaking at the event, the Director of CBC Health Services (DHS) Prof. Tih Pius Muffih described the event as the celebration of a milestone achievement; the completion of the health centre’s Outpatient Department (OPD) building. The health centre, the DHS said, started in a rented apartment in the Ekounou neighbourhood in 2006 with just a handful of staff and has since grown to have a staff strength of 91 and two medical doctors today, seeing about 150 patients a day and averagely 48,000 patients annually.
While appreciating the CBC leadership, Technical Service Department (TSD) of the CBC Health Services, Essoka Group Ltd (the contractor) and, second level control Better Living Company Ltd, and all the other stakeholders for working hard to ensure the realisation of the building, Prof. Tih Pius encouraged staff to remain committed as they use the facility to provide quality and compassionate services to patients as an expression of Christian love.
The DHS said Ekounou Baptist Health Centre is envisaged to become Baptist Hospital Yaounde soon and subsequently a referral hospital of the CBC. “This is potentially going to be a referral hospital with a difference in Cameroon with emphasis on quality care to all…,” reiterated the DHS.
In a sermon, Pastor Bambo Denis, Senior Administrator of the AIDS Care and Prevention (ACP) program of the CBC Health Services challenged health centre workers and all present to be serious, selfless and work in the fear of the Lord in the delivery of services to the patients.
Preaching from Luke 9:1-16 under the title ‘Commitment’, he exhorted staff saying, “Work as unto to God and not as unto man. Do not serve because you want your supervisor to see you but because even if he doesn’t see you, God sees you and will reward you.”
“Work hard and remember that workers make institutions and not buildings,” he continued.
Pastor Bambo also advised the staff to ensure that their work duty and relationship with patients tie with Church covenant of the CBC and CBC Health Services’ mission statement.
The Technical Supervisor of the CBC Health Services’ Technical Service Department (TSD), Mr. Chiamba Abraham, described the 100-room structure as a stand-alone, self-content medical block in which primary, secondary and tertiary medical services are offered. The building has five levels and the floor level constitutes the reception/information desk, the waiting area, and registration and payment rooms, vital signs/know your numbers, regular/ emergency consultation and injection treatment and minor surgery rooms.
The first floor harbors the laboratory, pharmacy, chaplaincy and autoclaving services while the second floor contains physiotherapy services with an attractive gymnasium, x-ray and Ultrasound services and some administrative offices which are transitory. The third floor has the VIP consultation/observation rooms, general observation ward, eye care services, women’s health unit and diabetes and hypertension clinic. On the last floor is the maternity, dental Prevention of Mother-to-Child-Transmission (PMTCT) of HIV and nutrition services. The building has a functional lift to ease access, especially for patients.
The representative of the Executive President, Rev. Dr. Nditemeh Charlemagne (Yaounde Field Pastor) thanked the French Development Agency (AFD) for the funding that has led to the realization of the gigantic building. He was also thankful to the Cameroon government for providing an enabling environment for the CBC Health Services and encouraging the organisation in the provision of health care to Cameroonians.
“CBC Health Services is recognized by the government of Cameroon as the second health service provider in Cameroon after the government,” stated Rev. Dr. Nditemeh. “The services we provide are high-quality services…,” he added.
The District Medical Officer (DMO) for Ekounou Health District praised the CBC Health services for bringing such quality services closer to the population. He corroborated earlier speakers by affirming CBC Health Services as a veritable partner to the Ministry of Public Health.
He encouraged the population of his district to make maximum use of the services offered at Ekounou Baptist Health Centre.
The newly installed pioneer Assistant Administrator, Mr. Kadzem Claude, expressed gratitude to the CBC Health Services hierarchy for his appointment and the trust bestowed in him, promising to execute his services diligently in keeping with the CBC Health Services’ mission statement.
“We offer many services including, antenatal service, eye services, dental services, ophthalmology, HIV prevention and treatment, services for persons with disabilities amongst others,” Mr. Kadzem told the press. He added that in due time, the health center intends to include other inpatients services such as surgery.