Takoradi, Oct. 12, GNA - Mrs Gladys Asmah, Minister of Fisheries, on Wednesday said the country has reached a stage in its body politick, where the call for transparency and good governance was no more the preserve of only the people in Government.
She was speaking at the inauguration of renovated female ward and open day of Takoradi Hospital in Takoradi.
Mrs Asmah, who is the Member of Parliament for Takoradi, said, "It is, therefore, the responsibility of all organisations to open up to their clients and the public to enable them know and understand their activities, so that they can offer the necessary support in times of need".
She said the NPP Government has decided to focus on human resource development as a tool for poverty reduction in its policy for the second term in Governance.
"The health needs of the people has, therefore, been identified as one of the most important components of this policy", Mrs Gladys added. She said this has resulted in the Government voting so much funds from both the budgetary allocation and the HIPC relief into the revamping and provision of more health facilities throughout the country. Mrs Asmah said the Government has also introduced the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) not only as an answer to a campaign pledge but also as a process of making health delivery affordable to all. She urged those, who have not joined the scheme to do so, as it has been proven worldwide as the best form of health delivery. Mrs Asmah promised to support the hospital rehabilitation programme with 100 million cedis.
Mr Joseph Boahen Aidoo, Western Regional Minister, asked women to take the lead in registering for the NHIS because they are vulnerable. He said as women patronise health facilities more than men, they should show more commitment to the NHIS. Mr Aidoo commended the authorities of the hospital for launching a rehabilitation programme to make it possible for the hospital to cope with patients, when the NHIS takes off.
Mr Aidoo said the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) would contribute five million cedis towards the rehabilitation programme.
Mr Philip Kwesi Nkrumah, Shama-Ahanta East Metropolitan Chief Executive, said health facilities could reduce their dependence on the government for resources through good management practices. He urged health institutions in the metropolis to endeavour to adopt prudent management practices, so that the health delivery system in the metropolis would be one of the best in the country. Dr Sylvester Anemana, Regional Director of Ghana Health Service, expressed concern about the rate at which health professionals were leaving the service.
He said the increased intake in the training institutions and the payment of Additional Duty Allowance may not effectively address the situation.
Dr Anemana suggested provision of reasonably adequate remuneration, setting up of provident fund to cater for the retirement needs of health staff and development of housing scheme for health personnel to stem the tide.
He said the physical state of some health facilities in the region leave much to be desired and the Regional Health Directorate in collaboration with the district assemblies and other health partners to rehabilitate them to improve access for the vulnerable in society. Dr Kofi Sabeng, Medical Director of the Takoradi Hospital said, the ward was renovated at the cost of 602,780,868 cedis with internally generated funds of the hospital.
He said the project ends the second phase of the rehabilitation programme of the hospital.
Dr Sabeng said the hospital realised 15 million cedis out of a target of 10 billion cedis in the "Save Takoradi Hospital Fund" launched in collaboration with Goodnews FM. He said the hospital would be 76, this year. Other Speakers at the function were Mr James Kyei, Regional Pharmacist and Mrs Araba Amua-Sekyi, Regional Director of the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ). Mr Charles Dayal, a Takoradi businessman, donated two fridges to the hospital.