KINTAMPO HEALTH RESEARCH CENTRE(KHRC)
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Introduction

Kintampo Health Research Centre operates in the four contiguous districts in the Brong Ahafo region namely, Kintampo, Nkoranza, Techiman and Wenchi; with Kintampo as the Headquarters. With the Start of the Seroconversion project, KHRC's operation area extended to the Offinso district in the Ashanti Region, precisely in Akumadan and Nkenkensu towns.

By way of a report for the year 2007, the administration of KHRC could be viewed under the following headings:

COLLABORATION

The Kintampo Health Research Centre’s working relations continue to grow from strength to strength.  The centre currently collaborates with several institutions such as the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine(LSHTM), Hospital for sick children in Toronto, Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research(NMIMR) and the Institute of Psychiatry-UK.The centre continues to attract funding from the World Health Organization(WHO),Department For International Development (DFID),United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Wellcome Trust, Malaria Vaccine Initiative (MVI) and Malaria Vaccine Partnership among others.

STAFF

The Kintampo Health Research Centre recorded total staff strength of six hundred and forty (640) during the year under review.  This figure represents an increase of hundred (100) staff from the previous year - 2007.  These staff work in various projects namely:

  1. Obaapa Vitamin A
  2. Gates Malaria Project (GMP) Malaria Study.
  3. Neonatal Research Programme Consortium (NRPC)
  4. Mental Research Programme Consortium (MRPC)
  5. Malaria Vaccine Initiative (MVI)
  6. Depression in Obaapa & NewHints (DON) Study
  7. Newborn Home Intervention Trial (NEWHINTS)
  8. Malaria Clinical Trial Alliance (MCTA)
  9. Kintampo Health and Demographic Surveillance System(KHDSS)
  10. Low Birth Weight Study (LBW)
  11. Food Fortification Study (FFS)
  12. International Atomic Energy Agency/Modified Relative Dose Response
  13.  (IAEA/MRDR)
  14. Ahafo Baseline Study
  15. Chorproguanil-Dapsone Artesunate (CDA) study
  16. Biomass Study

The centre in line with its strategic plan to make itself attractive has developed a Health and Demographic Surveillance System (KHDSS) which offers support to all projects at the centre, and again provides demographic database that informs prospective collaborators in making informed decisions about work.  The KHDSS currently has twenty six (26) staff working and this figure excludes two national service personnel who will be completing their service in August 2008.

In a bid to beef up staff strength, the centre took on some new staff. They include a new Obaapa Trial Director, Dr. Poorna Gunasekera, Mr. Justin Fenty and Guus Ten Asbroek.Justin and Guus work as statistician and team leader respectively in the Obaapa project. The Malaria projects engaged the services of Dr. Stephen Apanga and Yettey.  However, Yettey resigned shortly to take up a PhD programme in the United States of America. Miss Veronica Agyemang also joined the Centre and did her internship at the laboratory.

A number of resignations were recorded by the centre during the same period. Margaret Ely and Dr. Bilal Iqal who were both working on the Obaapa project left the centre. In addition, the Personnel Officer and the Wenchi site leader also resigned. The site leader has since been replaced by Mr.  Charles Fellah.

It was a privilege for the centre to welcome back into its fold Mr. Jacob Saah who completed his Executive Masters in Public Administration programme at the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), and Dr. Sam Newton who graduated with a PhD from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM).

The centre also engaged the services of six (6) National Service personnel at the laboratory, Mental Health and KHDSS departments.

STUDY AREAS

The centre continues to operate in six (6) contiguous districts of the Brong Ahafo region namely Kintampo North and South, Nkoranza, Wenchi and Tain with Kintampo North being the headquarters.  However, the centre continues to maintain links with Afrancho, Akomadan and Nkenkansu communities in the Ashanti Region where a sero conversion study was previously conducted. We will not hesitate in further carrying out studies in these communities.

TRANSPORT

The centre suffered a loss when one of the vehicles was involved in an accident.  This brought down the total number of pick-ups to five (5). The number of station wagons increased from eight (8) to nine (9) while the number of salon cars remained one. The total number of motorbikes during the year under review still stood at 65.

The motorbikes are distributed as follows:-
Wenchi site – 10,   Techiman   – 12,     Nkoranza site – 8,     Kintampo site – 12,
 KHDSS        – 11,    RTSS/MVI – 5,    Mental Health – 1,     NewHints        - 6

ACCOMMODATION FOR STAFF

During the year, KHRC constructed a four (4) two- bed room units to house very senior members of the centre.  This decision was in line with KHRC’s ambition to make its senior staff happy and comfortable by creating a staff village. However, this facility is still inadequate for the growing number of senior staff. The centre therefore had no option than to rent a two (2) bed room facility at Asikafour abantem from one Malik, a landlord.

OFFICE ACCOMMODATION

The centre was able to complete the construction of an ultra modern laboratory during the year under review.  The construction of this building became necessary in view of increase in work load which rendered the old lab too small to accommodate staff and equipment. The construction of this laboratory building fulfilled the dream of the Director - Dr. Seth Owusu-Agyei who had been planning over the years to get the project out of the way. The old lab will be partitioned and used as offices.

The centre also furnished the conference room to international standards by purchasing comfortable chairs. Other facilities such as air-conditioners, fans, an intercom system, a PABX System and an LCD projector were also installed.

GUEST HOUSE

The facility is still in operation and it received about two hundred and twenty eight (228) visitors within the period under consideration.

STAFF TRAINING

Training of staff has been one of the crucial developments the centre has always embarked on.  A good number of staff has gone on attachment and workshops during the year under review.  Two senior staff were also sponsored for their Masters degree in South Africa. They are Mathew Sangber Dery and Kenneth Asaya.  The centre also facilitated the admission of some junior staff into various second cycle institutions such as the Nursing Training College (NTC), Community Health Nurses Training School (CHNTS) and the Rural Health Training School (RHTS).

WEB SITE

The centre’s web site received a boost by recruiting a communications person – Kabio Casmir Donlebo to help with work.  He is working closely with Williams Buunaaisie, the web site designer.

VISITORS

The centre was privileged to host about two hundred and thirty six (236) very important personalities during the period under review. Due to constraint of space just a few will be mentioned.
They include:

(i)  Zelee Hill (IE&C Consultant on the Obaapa project) LSHTM
(ii) Chris Hurt- London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
(iii)Clare Banoeng Yakubo of the Ghana Broadcasting Cooperation (GBC)
 (iv) T. Mbongi - Pfizer
(v) Prof. Betty Kirkwood- LSHTM
(vi) Prof. Fred Binka – School of Public Health, Legon
(vii)Rajiv Bahl from the World Health Organization (WHO)
(viii)Dr.Osman Sankoh, Executive Director of INDEPTH Network
(ix) Patrick L.kinney and Darrel Holmes from the Columbian University on the Biomass project
(x) Joe Cohen – GSK Biologicals

(xi) Gil Cusack from the United Nations International Children Emergency Fund (UNICEF)
(xii) Africa Media and Malaria Research Network (AMMREN)
(xiii) Charity Binka - AMMREN

NEW 150KV GENERATOR

The centre purchased a brand new 150KVA generator set which is serving as a back up to the national grid. Power from this unit serves the centre and the guest house.  This brings to five (5) the number of sources of power in the centre. They are 150kva and 27kva generators dedicated to the Centre and guesthouse, 250kva which is shared between the hospital and the KHRC for now, battery inverters which were installed at the computer centre and the laboratory, a mobile 15kva generator and the national grid.

Contact: Jacob Saah (Administrator-General)
E-mail: jacob.saah@kintampo-hrc.org
              jakesaah@yahom.com

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