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05.01.2011 Health

Health sector to focus on MDGs 4&5 and Family Planning for 2011

By GNA
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January 04, 2011 Accra, Jan. 4, GNA - The health sector has singled out Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4&5 and Family Planning as its main priority areas this year to develop the health sector and achieve the MDGs by 2015.

"Working to achieve MDGs 4&5 will be the only solution for the achievement of all the MDGs by 2015," Dr Elias Sory, Director-General of Ghana Health Service said in Accra on Tuesday.

Speaking to the Ghana News Agency in an interview on the Health Sector's focus for 2011, Dr Sory said the current maternal and child mortality rates were not encouraging and therefore much efforts were needed to reduce them drastically in order to achieve the desired target by 2015.

Goal 4 aims at reducing Child Mortality among children below five years by two-thirds between 1990 and 2015 while MDG 5 seeks to improve maternal mortality health by three-quarters within the same period.

For MDG 4 only five countries, excluding Ghana are on track to achieve the target of reducing under-five mortality rate by two-thirds between 1990 and 2015.

Dr Sory noted that Ghana needed to maintain her political momentum to attain the MDGs 4&5.

He explained that the maternal mortality rate in Ghana was currently 380 deaths per 100,000 live births and needed to ensure that it was reduced to 185 deaths per 100,000 live births whilst that of children reduced drastically.

The current child mortality rate is 68.5 deaths per 1,000 live births.

Dr Sory acknowledged the fact that some parts of the country that had high mortality rates had achieved targets of reducing maternal and child mortality, "but we need the total reduction of both rates for the country as a whole," he added.

He noted that family planning was another area that would be targeted and had introduced programmes like life choices and would ensure that all family planning facilities were friendly.

"We will also ensure patience satisfaction and customer care and I urge all to enrol in the National Health Insurance Scheme to obtain proper health care at a lower cost"

Dr Sory said the health sector would by the end of January, this year, establish leadership training for all health personnel in the sector throughout the country to ensure leadership development.

He called on health workers to be more innovative, use the best practices and continue to learn to keep track with evolving trends and challenges.

GNA

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