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19.03.2004 Health

Hardworking health workers receive awards

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Accra, March 19, GNA - Ghana Health Service (GHS) on Friday awarded 38 health workers and 17 health institutions for distinguished performance last year.

The awards the first to be instituted by the Service was the culmination of several activities from the sub-district, district, regional and national levels.

Ms Patience Bekoe, from the Eastern Region, was adjudged the National Best Community Health Worker, and took home an air ticket to undertake a year's programme in Public Health in any institution outside Ghana.

Ms Edith Agyeiwaa from the Greater Accra Region came. Ms Francisca Billah, Northern Region; came third and in addition won the Director-General's Special Award.

Ms Salamatu Ibrahim, from the Brong Ahafo Region won the Best National Reproductive Health Worker Award and took home 10 million cedis worth of furniture and a dinning set.

Ms Cecilia Mahama from the Northern Region came second followed by Ms Ruby Nortey from the Greater Accra Region.

Ho District Health Management Team (DHMT) won the Best DHMT Award and was given a generator, followed by Dangme East, which had a computer and its accessories. Bolgatanga came third took away a double door refrigerator.

Tsito Health Centre in the Volta Region was declared the Best Health Centre and was presented with a generator. Kyekyewere Health Centre in the Central Region came second and was presented with a computer and its accessories while Kwaso Health Centre in the Ashanti Region came third and took away a double door refrigerator.

Central Regional Hospital was adjudged the Best Regional Hospital and was presented with two computers and their accessories.

Volta Regional Hospital was adjudged the Cleanest Hospital and was presented with a generator.

Salaga Hospital won the Best District Hospital Award, followed by Nsawam Government Hospital and Saint Martin's Hospital at Agroyesum in the Amansie West District of the Ashanti Region.

Dr Alex Obeng of the Western Region won the Best District Hospital Worker award followed by Mr Divine Azameti, Volta and Mr Sampson Obeng Hinneh of Brong Ahafo, the second and third positions, respectively.

The Best Regional Health Management Team Worker Award went to Ms Mary Amina Buakari of Northern Region, followed by Ms Crencentia Duopar of Upper West and Mr Robert Adu Nkansah from the Eastern Regions.

The awards ceremony formed part of the activities marking the first anniversary celebrations of the Service. It is as a sign of recognition of health workers, who despite the challenges of mass migration, poor service conditions and poor remuneration, continued to show dedication and commitment to the promotion of quality health care delivery to Ghanaians.

Professor Agyeman Badu Akosa, Director-General of GHS, said after touring five Regions, he realised that health workers who decided not to join the exodus but worked for the nation, continued to work in very appalling situations "yet they continued to exhibit professionalism." He said; "to be a health professional, empathy must always be your maiden name, smile should never be wiped away from your face; with this, clients, who come to you will always recover from their illnesses very fast."

Prof. Akosa commended the award winners and all health workers for their tireless effort in giving quality health care. Dr Kwaku Afriyie, Minister of Health, commended the Service for instituting the awards to recognise hard working staff in the health profession.

He said despite the achievements of the health sector, significant health problems like severe malnutrition, micronutrient deficiency was prevalent among children and guinea worm infestation continued to exist. "These observations pose systematic challenges to the health sector limiting health services and inadequate service quality but the Ministry is embarking on some initiatives to improve the conditions of services for health workers."

He said the Government would not allow their dedication to duty to be in vain, adding: "We will continue to make life more bearable for you and ensure that those who decide to contribute fully to national development also enjoy the benefits of development".