JHR investigation results in a new ambulance for a hospital in Liberia

Oniel Bestman, a jhr trained journalist, investigated and boradcast a story that resulted in a hospital in northern Liberia recieving a new ambulance

Monrovia – Dr. Benedict Kolee has served as chief medical officer at the Jackson F. Doe Regional Referral Hospital, located in Liberia’s northern Nimba County, since February 2011, when it was inaugurated by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. In that time he has seen firsthand the complications posed by one of the hospital’s principal obstacles: the lack of a functioning ambulance.

 

Between July and December 2011, the only ambulance given to the hospital was down because of mechanical problems, forcing staff to resort to alternative forms of transportation in emergency situations.

 

Oniel Bestman, a reporter for Liberia’s Truth FM, decided to visit the hospital after recieving a reporting grant from jhr. Bestman was accompanied by Ladymai Hunter of Liberia Women Democracy Radio.

 

Bestman and Hunter knew they found their story after speaking with Dr. Kolee who says the lack of ambulance is “the biggest challenge undermining the health services delivery at the facility.”

 

Bestman and Hunter filed their reports as soon as they returned back to Monrovia, and the impact was almost as sudden. Within days, the World Bank responded by donating an ambulance to the facility.

 

In a follow-up story produced in early January that took note of the World Bank donation, Bestman interviewed Dr. Kolee a second time. Kolle stressed that he was pleased with the response to the story, but also pointed out that the hospital would only have maximum impact once the total number of ambulances reached four or five.

 

Without the work of Bestman and the grant he recived from JHR to investigate this story it’s likely that the Jackson F. Doe Regional Referral Hospital would still be looking for it’s first ambulance.

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