Madam Stephanie Sullivan, United States Ambassador to Ghana on Tuesday handed over two fully equipped state of the art African Peacekeeping Rapid Response Partnership (APRRP) United Nations Level II Deployable Hospitals to the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF).
The Facilities, which are located at the 37 Military Hospital in Accra cost approximately $6.5 million.
The medical component of the APRRP programme is designed to enable the GAF to rapidly deploy and operate a UN-Standard Level II Hospital should anything threaten regional stability.
It was jointly commissioned by Madam Sullivan and Mr Dominic Nitiwul, the Minister of Defence.
The programme, in general, is aimed at building sustainable capabilities in selected African partner nations to enable rapid deployment in support of peacekeeping operations or other developing crises.
Madam Sullivan said the GAF, as an institution, had earned global respect for its six decades of UN Peacekeeping Operations; adding that its military professionalism, upholding democratic values, and its dedication to partnering in joint training programmes, with the Armed Forces of many nations including the US.
She said the US and Ghana were close partners in addressing regional and international security issues.
“To that end, the US and Ghanaian militaries have cooperated on numerous joint training exercises designed to increase the effectiveness of both our security forces’ ability to respond to international threats such as trafficking in person or drugs, terrorism and regional, and international instability,” she said.
She said through APRRP, the US had invested in the capacity of Ghana and five other African countries that have proven themselves leaders in peacekeeping.
The Ambassador said Ghana had successfully demonstrated its commitment and capacity to lead the charge in this field.
“Today marks another key element of the strong and deep collaboration between our two countries. These hospitals represent a concrete commitment by the US to Ghana and other international peacekeepers on future deployments,” she said.
Madam Sullivan said the medical component of APRRP was designed to strengthen and institutionalise the medical capabilities of the GAF to rapidly deploy, operate and sustain a UN-standard Level Two Hospital for peacekeeping operations in response to emerging crises in Africa.
She said to date, the US and GAF had conducted three APRRP medical pieces of training.
She noted that currently, GAF personnel-both medical and non-medical were receiving Level Two Hospital vendor training in setting up and operating a deployable hospital.
She intimated that the training would ensure the proper use of facilities and improve the medical care of Ghana’s and other international peacekeepers.
Mr Nitiwul expressed gratitude to the US Government for the immense assistance rendered to the GAF; declaring that; “I am really delighted at the increased collaboration between the US Government and the GAF over the last two years”.
He said the training aspects of the medical component of the programme marks one of the most practical deployment experience acquisition mechanism for the GAF Medical personnel.
The shared platform between GAF and the US Partners provided the GAF participants the opportunity to tap into the many years of deployment experience.
He said the subject areas include medical, planning, logistics and biomedical equipment repairs, field sanitation, vendor training and advance trauma life support, adding to GAF many years of peacekeeping experience.
Brigadier General Nii Adjah Obodai, Commander, 37 Military Hospital said APRRP’s overall aim was to help GAF MED to institutionalise some specific programmes and open up training sessions to qualify medics in Ghana and the sub-region.
In attendance at the event was Lieutenant General Obed Boamah Akwa, the Chief of Defence Staff of GAF.