In medical treatment, the cooperation between health workers and clients who visit their facilities largely count for the successful recovery or otherwise of a patient.
Reports from patients and health workers in various parts of the country has however showed that the relationship between health workers and their clients are always not a happy one and the reasons tend to be varied in every situation.
A video that is fast generating social media interaction is one in which a woman is seriously confronting a pharmacist over her inability to speak the native language of her mother who is the patient.
From the narration of the woman doing the confrontation, the incident occurred at the Sogakope Hospital where her mother had gone to seek medical attention.
The female pharmacist serving her mother had an issue communicating with her client and the daughter of the client who felt incensed by the situation took the video whiles confronting the health worker over her failure to communicate in Ewe while working in an Eweland.
“If the person is in Ashanti Region the person speaks Twi. But we are in Volta Region and so you don’t speak Twi to a patient in the hospital. The person doesn’t speak Twi, this is so wrong. I am telling you, Twi is not a national language. This is so wrong,” she stated with the camera showing the health worker busily scribbling in a patient’s folder.
“I am not saying it’s a national language, are you telling me that all the people working here should be Ewe people?” the health worker questioned back.
Furtherance to the question by the health worker, the patient relative explained her position saying, “No, what I am saying is that you should learn to speak the Ewe or they should pair you with an Ewe person. So if the person comes and you don’t speak Ewe and the person does not speak English, then the person speaks Ewe to the person. But you do not speak Twi to the person. Guys,” she replied.
The furious patient’s relative then turned the commentary into an appeal to her fellow Ewes about the situation at the hospital which she described as wrong.
“This is my mother here, she doesn’t speak no Twi, no English and she is being spoken Twi to in Sogakope Hospital. Ewes do something, Volta Region do something about this,” she furiously ranted.
Speaking to a health worker who has worked in the Upper West Region and is now stationed in the Eastern Region about the video, he stated that such confrontations between health workers and patients is quite common in health facilities across the country.
He added that patients and patient relatives however tend to be antagonistic towards health workers who are unable to communicate in their native language.
“It’s quite frequent and some patients even feel like it is a must for a health worker to be able to speak in their native language. I have witnessed situations where even when the patient understands what you are communicating, they will deliberately pretend they don’t understand.
I remember a situation where a doctor was communicating to a patient who understood very well what the doctor was saying but refused to cooperate. The doctor after trying hard with no positive outcome asked him to leave if he thinks he doesn’t need his service and the guy got up and left,” the health worker who pleaded anonymity said.