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12.10.2008 Social News

Medical superintendents call for a national disaster policy

By GNA

The Medical Superintendents Group (MSG) of Ghana, has called on the government to establish a national disaster policy with a holistic national emergency response approach involving communities, health institutions and organized groups to tackle disasters.

The Group said such a system when established should review land use, state funding and laws on disasters and mobilization of resources to manage disasters, which would also help in the proper handling of all emergency situations.

Dr. George Acquaye, President of MSG made the call in Tamale at the
seventh Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the group.

The four-day meeting is on the theme: “Disaster here, Disaster there. How prepared are we” and sought to create the forum for Chief Executives of hospitals to share ideas in the running of the hospitals.

The forum has also created an avenue for policy initiation and innovation for implementation particularly in the forefront of continuing professional development of staff for efficient running of their hospitals.

Dr Acquaye said the country had been faced with disasters, which would continue to occur if adequate steps were not taken to address them with the commitment of the political will to ensure that disasters were well managed.

Dr Acquaye called for a post graduate programme in Emergency Medicine that would look at the entire system of disaster and mass casualty incidents rather than tackling only emergency case management.

Dr Elias Sory, Director General (DG) of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) in a speech read on his behalf called for compulsory and equitable distribution of “Housemen” into the various hospitals to fill the gaps.

He said the situation where young doctors were allowed to choose and post themselves to hospitals of their choice was not helping the needy regions particularly the three Northern regions to enhance the delivery of quality healthcare to the people.

Mrs. Gladys Norley Ashietey, Deputy Minister of Health said inadequate well-trained personnel to tackle emergency cases was the bane of emergency management and stressed the need for the provision of proper infrastructure and equipment to tackle emergencies.

Alhaji Mustapha Ali Idris, Northern Regional Minister called for the establishment of strategic zones for the storage of basic food items for disaster victims or any disaster eventuality.

He said a rapid response team should also be established in the Tamale Teaching Hospital to take care of disasters and appealed to doctors to accept postings to the region to help improve healthcare delivery.

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