Major Courage Quashigah (Rtd), Minister of Health says the Ministry has embarked on preventive health care programmes known as regenerative health and nutrition project as a total paradigm shift from curative health care.
Major Quashigah speaking at a meeting between the traditional medicine practitioners' council and leadership of Faith Healers Association in Ghana noted that the programme would help government save funds which hitherto were spent on preventable diseases and deaths, adding that savings could be disbursed for the provision of other relevant social services.
He said under the regenerative health and nutrition programme, emphasis was on preventive health, which included, healthy lifestyles such as eating healthy foods, resting and regular exercise for 30 minutes at least three times every week.
The programme is aimed at sensitizing the leadership of the Faith Healers Association in Ghana on the registration and licensing of traditional medicine practitioners, which the Ministry of Health began in January this year.
"As spiritual leaders your support in this important national and divine assignment need no emphasis because God has put you in a strategic position to propagate or evangelize on the message of Regenerative Health and Nutrition. Healthy living will no doubt complement the spiritual living that you have always preached in your pulpits", he said.
Major Quashigah noted that faith healing was considered as an integral part of traditional healthcare because the art and science of the healing processes were closely related to people's religious beliefs as well as their social, cultural and traditional practices.
"Faith healers promote and secure the holistic health status of patients by using naturally occurring substances such as plants, animals, and minerals," he said.
Major Quashigah said the Ministry had initiated moves to develop traditional healthcare through the implementation of traditional medicine practice Act, the establishment of key regulatory structures and the accreditation of practitioners and practice premises.
He said this would help in giving legal recognition to traditional practice, and weed out charlatans to safeguard the health of the citizenry.
He therefore called on religious leaders to ensure that people learn to obey the natural laws of God by promoting environmental cleanliness.
Mr F.K Hlortsi-Akakpo, Registrar of the Traditional Medical Practice Council advised traditional medical practitioners and faith healers to support the council in its efforts to weed out charlatans in the profession.