A lecturer at the University of Nottingham, Professor Noel Tagoe has described as over-ambitious government’s decision to undertake ‘Agenda 111’ health infrastructure.
Speaking on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show Tuesday, the educationist said although the project will contribute immensely to the country’s health sector, it could also impede the future of its economic growth.
He stressed that government must rather consider the financial strength of the country and undertake the project gradually.
“Who is chasing us to build several hospitals at a go?,” he quizzed.
“I am not saying hospitals are not good, I am saying, let us space it according to what we have. Because if where we are going to get the money from is in such that it will impair our future growth then let us space it,” he told hosts Winston Amoah and Kojo Yankson.
President Akufo-Addo in his State of the Nation address (SONA) expressed his resolve to embark on the biggest healthcare investment in the country’s history, dubbed Agenda 111.
“As announced last year, Agenda 111, which will see to the construction of 100-bed District Hospitals in 101 Districts with no hospitals, seven Regional Hospitals for the new Regions, including one for the Western Region, the construction of two new psychiatric hospitals for the Middle Belt and Northern Belt, respectively, and the rehabilitation of Effia-Nkwanta Hospital in the Western Region, is on course. Construction of some of these hospitals has commenced and will continue without interruption,” the President said on March 9.
But defending his position, Prof Tagoe said investing in the few health facilities and its staff will go a long way to build a more robust health sector than building more hospitals which may become either under used or unequipped.
“We have to make sure we utilise the hospitals we have now, we utilize the personnel that we have now. There was a debate that I had with people about our fetish for buildings whether it is schools or hospitals.
“If you want to invest in the health service, invest in the people,” he stressed.
The Academician further called for a more integrated approach to build a sustainable health system in the country.
“Do we have doctors, nurses and people who are going to operate the facilities? Do we have the culture of excellence in medical delivery?
“We must make sure that these things are there as we approach. So an integrated approach and that is what will be more sustainable,” he said.
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