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Outsource Ambulance Call Service to Save Lives ― Customer Service Provider

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The lack of ambulances in the country has been an issue―stalling Ghana’s progress in giving to its citizens, proper and comprehensive health care.

The campaign for government to procure more ambulances has since been rekindled following the death of the former Vice President, Mr Amissah Arthur.

To curb the bane of a broken and disgruntled ambulance service in Ghana, the Head of Business Development at E-Service Africa Limited, Mr Ernest Amartey Otu, has suggested that emergency respond services be subcontracted to private customer experience companies.

According to him, advanced countries like the US have resorted to this initiative―making it easier to reach those in need of emergency services.

Speaking on Accra based Class FM, yesterday, Mr Otu said an emergency service placed in private hands like his company, would allow for a 24-hour response system―one that the current ambulance system does not give.

“It is possible to have that done…it’s in house now. The only challenge we have been able to come across is that it is not a 24-hour service as it is required for it to be,” He said.

For a call centre to be effective, Mr Otu explained that three pillars―Technology, Process and People must be highly involved.

“Specifically, on the technology side, you need a robust system that should be able to enable a 24-hour operation, interfacing with all emergency units that needs to respond to it.

“Then also, there are the people side where they need to have an emergency call handling process…you need to be someone who has been trained on a call centre process to be able to do that,” he explained.

He added, “It’s not just about providing the service but how you ensure that there is satisfaction when customers actually call.”

But Head of Operation at the Ghana Ambulance Service, Mr. Foster Ansong-Dridjan says the service may not be able to venture into outsourcing its call centre since it is already struggling to meet certain basic needs.

If any outsourcing would be done, Mr Ansong-Dridjan suggest the service rather partners with private hospitals to engage their ambulance service.

“A way that we can easily expand the number from 55 to perhaps 100 for starters, is to go into partnership with the private hospitals that have private ambulances. During their spare time what do those ambulances do? But none of these things will happen if the system is not responsive to individual creativity and to entrepreneurial impute,” he said.

Broken Ambulance system

The country currently has only 55 working ambulances to service 130 stations.

In the Ashanti region, there are17 ambulance stations but only five ambulances are functional and this seems to be the case in all regions.

According to Mr Ansong-Dridjan, “The situation is so critical that we need something drastic to be done to be able to improve it,” adding that to fix the broken ambulances, government must invest in getting at least ‘slightly used’ engines to make them functional again.

By: Grace Ablewor Sogbey/ ksogbey@gmail.com

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