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15.10.2005 General News

Let your training benefit the poor- Prof Akosa

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Elmina, Oct. 15, GNA-Professor Agyemang Badu Akosa Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) on Saturday repeated calls on medical personnel to accept postings to the rural areas, since the people there were also Ghanaians and entitled to their services. He deplored the situation where some doctors refused transfers to such places and stressed that they should ensure that they used their education for the benefit of the poor who also contributed towards their training.

Prof. Akosa was opening a three-day bi-annual national conference of medical superintendents' group (MSG), at Elmina under the theme, "enhancing the performance of hospitals through efficient and effective leadership, the challenges of National Health Insurance (NHIS)". It aims, among others at, bringing the nation's medical superintendents together, to cross-fertilize their ideas, to facilitate the successful implementation of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to enhance health care delivery.

Prof Akosa, stressed that the GHS, had "sworn" to provide quality health care, result oriented and client focused services, inspite of the shortage of staff within the service.

He however, observed that due to their low number, one doctor attended to numerous patients and could get tired and "bound to make mistakes", while others too took the risks to save patients lives, rather than refer them to hospitals far away and under arduous journeys, and said the situation therefore demands that doctors are indemnified, to ensure that they are protected when the worse happens. Prof Akosa, pointed out, that this was not to say, that the indemnity should cover negligence or criminal acts, and argued that even in the United Kingdom, doctors are indemnified even though they work under less stressful conditions.

On the NHIS, he consented that they were bound to face a lot of challenges, and therefore tasked the participants as leaders, to strive to make a difference by ably tackling them to ensure its success. He in this regard, urged them to collaborate with the public health personnel to promote prevent health care.

Dr. Aaron Offei, Central Regional Director of Health Services, for his part, also echoed the challenges posed by the NHIS and told the participants, "the way we do things is going to be very critical". He said as professionals in leadership positions, they should not only pay lip service to quality service, which they aspire to render but strive to put it into practice.

He called on them to help ensure discipline, transparency and accountability, capacity development and dedication to duty to promote the success of their work.

Dr Daniel Asare, president of the MSG, said the conference offers an opportunity to the managers of hospitals to come together and learn about the NHIS from each other in order to promote its success. According to him, the NHIS would introduce some positive changes into the health institutions, which would go a long way to ensure the provision of quality health care delivery system.

Dr Darius Osei Kofi, Director of the Central Regional Hospital, in a welcoming address, said the importance of public hospitals in the successful implementation of NHIS, which is to provide quality service to its clients, could not be over-emphasized.

According to him, the success or failure of the scheme depended to a large extent on whether, as the medical superintendents, they have played their role effectively or not, and therefore asked them to shift from the old ways of doing things.

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