The Ministries of Health and Finance has finally released the financial clearance for 3,060 graduate nurses and 230 allied health professionals to facilitate their employment in the various hospitals in the country.
This follows constant demonstrations by the health professionals to get public sector employment.
Out of the number of nurses verified and cleared, 97 are staff nurses, 31 are staff midwives, 2,333 are enrolled nurses and 599 are community health nurses.
The allied health professionals include 11 dental technicians, 12 technical officers (laboratory), five technical officers (nutrition), 70 field technicians, 110 physiotherapy assistants and 26 technician assistants.
“As per the verified list from the Nurses and Midwives Council and the Allied Health Professionals Council, authority is thereby granted to enable the Ministry of Health engage the services of three thousand and sixty health trainees and two hundred and thirty-four Allied Health Professionals to augment the staffing positions of various health facilities as per the attached,” portions of the financial clearance stated.
“The Ministry of Health, in collaboration with the respective facilities, is to ensure that those to be engaged have their documents processed early and placed on the mechanised payroll system to enable the Controller and Accountant General's Department effect payment of their salaries in time to reduce the incidence of arrears to be paid to staff,” the statement further noted.
The release of the clearance comes after over 100 nurses picketed the Flagstaff House on Monday to demand immediate employment from government, which led to the arrest of 15 of them.
The nurses were granted bail later same day, but it seems the latest protest by the nurses was what forced government to finally release their clearance for employment.
The group that picketed the seat of government was the last batch of nurses and midwives who had signed a four-year bond with the Government of Ghana regarding their training.
The bond covered cost of training subsidy including allowances and automatic employment from government while the nurses are to serve the country for four years after their training.
The Government of Ghana has however failed to honour this bond by not paying some of these enrolled nurses and community health nurses their students' allowances.
Government has also failed in its obligation under the bond to employ the nurses automatically to ensure they serve their four-year bond for the past two years.
By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri