Mr Kweku Agyemang Manu, Minister of Health, has said government is renegotiating the codified conditions of service for public sector health professionals with particular attention to rural or deprived area incentives.
He said government would continue to engage with stakeholders on how to better care for health professionals and collectively make the health system more responsive to the needs of all Ghanaians.
“We are committed to improving upon the access of our people to essential and quality health services through the provision of the necessary health infrastructure, equipment and logistics including the deployment of appropriate technology.”
Mr Agyemang Manu said this during the induction of newly qualified Physician Assistants and Certified Registered Anaesthetists by the Medical and Dental Council (MDC), on Thursday, in Accra.
The inductees were from eight training schools in the country including the University of Health and Allied Sciences, College of Health and Wellbeing, Kintampo; the Presbyterian University, Agogo; the Central University College, Miotso; and Radford University College, Accra.
The rest are the School of Anaethesia, Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Kumasi; 37 Military Hospital; the Greater Accra Regional Hospital.
He said their induction has come at a time when there still persists inequities in the distribution of healthcare professionals especially doctors and dentists adding that they would undergo a 12-month internship period in accredited health facilities across the country.
Mr Agyemang Manu said the country did not have the right numbers and the right mix of skills and expertise in the districts and rural areas, however, as a Ministry they have established the Quality Management Unit to ensure that people receive the best of healthcare services irrespective of their geographical location.
He said the medical profession is regulated for public interest and public policy reasons, and in keeping with the high regards that society accords to healthcare professionals, they must protect public health and wellbeing and guide the profession and how it is practiced.
He congratulated and urged the inductees to accept postings to accredited district hospitals and sub-district facilities where their services were most needed as middle level cadres.
He commended the Council for being proactive in dealing with professional regulatory issues and holding a reputable status in medical regulation on the continent of Africa.
Dr. E. K. Atikpui, Registrar, MDC, said the Council was a statutory Agency under the Ministry of Health established by the Health Professions Regulatory Bodies Act, 2013 (Act 857), and was to secure in the public interest the highest standard of training and practice of medicine and dentistry in the country.
He said the Council, therefore, assures the public that a Physician Assistant or Certified Registered Anaesthetist whose name appears on any register of the Council, has met the appropriate training standards for medical/dental practice in the country.
Professor P.K. Nyame, the Chairman of the Ninth Board of the Medical and Dental Council, who took the inductees through the Oath of Office, charged them to be diligent and serve the people, and urged them to be cooperative and mutual among their colleagues, share information and have a team spirit.
“We should promote good health, respect and protect the dignity of the patient. We must help both the poor and the rich,” he said.
Dr Teye Agyasi, a Former Council Member, advised inductees to abide by the Code of Ethics of the profession, uphold it at all times and execute their duty with dignity and respect, and give back to community what they have been taught.
“Do not turn your back on the community members, work with the patients, continue reading, provide care with smiles and dignity, have compassion and involve your clients in their home care”.