Publication Date

Spring 1995


In an attempt to study women's health care in Ghana, an internship was acquired at Korle Bu Teaching Hospital. For three weeks, the author joined a team of doctors, observed the methods they used, as well as the beliefs and traditions held by the patients, in regards to the fields of obstetrics and gynecology. The primary focus of the internship was to examine the system of care offered at KBTH, and compare it to an American system that the author had previously observed. As expected, the system of obstetrics observer at KBTH was found to be quite different from that of the United States. The most basic difference was that midwives deliver the vast majority of the babies in Ghana, whereas obstetricians delivered all of the babies in the American hospital that the author observed. This difference afforded the Ghanaian patient a number of benefits. For instance, they are given more time to deliver spontaneously than their counterparts in the United States. But the system is not without its drawbacks; The amount of compassion given to the labouring woman in KBTH does not come close to the amount given in the United States. These results led the author to conclude that there is a need for the medical officials in both the United States and Ghana to examine the other's system, and incorporate its most positive aspects into their own system, in order to improve the quality of care offered.