Mr Solomon Kwame Donkor, Jasikan District Chief Executive (DCE), last Wednesday called for mutually acceptable strategies to recoup investments being made on health professionals, especially those who travel abroad to work thereby causing brain drain to Ghana.
He suggested that a percentage of the remuneration of professionals who travel to work be channelled under an agreement into the national economy to address the shortfall in the health sector.
Mr Donkor was addressing the management and staff of Jasikan District Hospital in the Volta Region during their 2006 get-together and awards day at Jasikan. He said the brain drain in the health sector had not only affected the nation's scarce resources and healthcare delivery but also denied the people vital services.
Mr Donkor, therefore, appealed to health professionals planning to leave the country to rescind their decision and called on those abroad to return home to contribute to nation building. He said government would continue to evolve prudent policies to address pitfalls in the health sector including conditions of service of health workers.
On the National Health Insurance Scheme, Mr Donkor said giant strides have been made in the Volta Region despite initial problems and called on health workers to support the Scheme. He said 60 health assistants were being trained under the Health Extension Programme of the National Youth Employment Programme.
Mr Donkor said 100 million cedis has been set aside to combat bilharzias and to support immunisation programmes in the district and pledged to procure 20 new beds for the Hospital.
Dr Samuel Abudey, Medical Superintendent of the Hospital, said management was able to refurbish its operating theatre, expand wards to accommodate 15 more beds to complement the existing 37 beds.
He also said the Hospital provided water closets and bathrooms for in-patients, acquired a new generator, was constructing a doctor's bungalow and establishing a teak plantation though its internally generated fund.
He however, said the hospital lacked essential equipment such as x-ray and ultra sound machines, staff accommodation, a mortuary and that access roads in the hospital were in deplorable state.
Dr Abudey said despite the problems, infant mortality rate had reduced from 11 deaths in 2005 to 4 in 2006, representing 63.6 percent reduction adding that 23 HIV/AIDS cases were recorded in 2006 as against 16 in the previous year.
Comfort Agbadzah, Deputy Volta Regional Director of Nursing Services, commended the Hospital management for adopting unconventional approach to mobilise revenue beside the internally generated fund.
She admonished health workers especially nurses to shun tendencies that could drag their profession into disrepute stating, "money is important but clients satisfaction is paramount."
Mr Ignatius Mintah, former Presiding Member of the Jasikan Assembly, who presided, praised management and staff of the hospital for promoting health delivery in the area.
Meanwhile, Mrs Lucy Bonuedi, former Hospital matron, Mr Samuel Tei and Ms Georgina Bani who were honoured for their sterling performance each received a table-top fridge.