A team from Barbados has begun interviews of some specialised nurses for recruitment to health institutions in that country on a two-year work contract.
A total of 598 health professionals with a minimum work experience of three to five years, applied in the job recruitment exercise when the Ministry of Health (MoH) opened its portal from November 5 to 7, 2019.
Out of the 598 who applied, 150 were shortlisted out of whom 120 will finally be recruited by the Barbados team to start a two-year contract in that country.
The positions to be filled include eight emergency room nurses, six peri-operative nurses, three ophthalmic nurses, 70 registered nurses, 21 critical care nurses and 12 cardiac catheterisation nurses.
This will be the first time the country will formally export the services of nurses on bilateral basis.
The recruitment exercise became necessary after the Prime Minister of Barbados, Mr Mia Amor Motley, during bilateral discussions, made a formal request to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for Ghana to send specialised nurses to the Caribbean nation to work in a number of their government medical facilities to address the acute shortage of skilled health caregivers.
The Public Relations Officer of the MOH, Mr Elorm Ametepe, who confirmed that a team from Barbados was in the country to conduct the interview said the various supervisory agencies had been notified about the exercise.
A letter dated October 31, 2019 from the MOH was copied to the Nurses and Midwifery Council (NMC), the various teaching hospitals in the country, the Ghana Health Service, the Mental Health Authority, the Christian Health Association of Ghana (CHAG), health training institutions and other stakeholders.
120 to be recruited
Mr Ametepe gave an assurance that the country had a lot of surplus of these critical healthcare nurses and therefore exporting them to Barbados was the best option.
He said after the two years, the nurses were expected to come back to their workplaces while another set would also be given the opportunity to go and work in that country.
The decision to export Ghanaian nurses to Barbados is in line with an agreement reached between the Ghana government and its counterpart in Barbados in June this year when President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo toured the Caribbean.
The Barbadian Prime Minister had told President Nana Akufo-Addo that his country was searching for 400 nurses, to which Ghana was reported to have agreed to offer 375 to the Caribbean nation which is said to be in shortage of skilled caregivers.
“We have a surplus of nurses in Ghana, and placing them all in our public health system is one of my headaches. There have been a lot of nurses produced, which, for several years, we have not been able to do anything with,” Nana Akufo-Addo told the Prime Minister.