Ghana can now boast of a transparent health monitoring mechanism, following the adoption of the Community Scorecard (CSC).
The CSC, which is a community-based qualitative monitoring tool, would enable communities to scrutinize health projects at the local level monitor activities, performance evaluation of services, projects and even government administrative units.
The CSC would also enhance community engagement at all levels in relation to health.
Speaking at a stakeholders meeting in Accra on Wednesday, Mr Emmanuel Ayire, the Programmes Manager at the Family Health Division, said Ghana was rolling out CSC, which was being spearheaded by the Ghana Health Service (GHS), as part of the country’s commitment of rolling out accountability, management and transparency tools in the health sector to complement those of the United Nations.
He said every electoral area would have a community health management committee with members going to assess health service every quarter.
Mr Ayire mentioned respectful care, waiting time and the rating of health service information that would be useful for health decision-making process to improve on the health service of every area in Ghana as some of the works CSC would be doing.
“This is how the data collection at the community level is going to be, every community member will be given access so that they will know the rating that they did and will actually reflect what is in the system,” he said.
“So when that is done, there will be the need for further information on why that rating was done and that can be discussed in the community health management committee meetings.
There will also be durbars that will bring the community members together to discuss happenings in the community,” he said.
Dr Isabella Sagoe-Moses, the Deputy Director of Reproductive and Child Health Unit of the GHS, said the GHS started running the SCS but it was mainly facility based for the past three years.
She said, however, it had become necessary to use it at the national level for community development.
Dr Sagoe-Moses explained that the new approach had become necessary because it was the goal of health partners to let communities communicate their needs and want.
She said the engagement was timely and an opportunity for stakeholders to take a look at what has been developed and the indicators selected for inputs that would be better for all.
Dr Ernest Asiedu, the Coordinator of Community and Institutional Care at the Ministry of Health, said Ghana’s signing on to the CSC would create healthy competition in the health sector.
He said it was timely and important and called for a collective approach towards the sustainability of the project.
Mr Ketema Bizuneh, a representative of Africa Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA), said the CSC would focus on national priorities, provide strategies and roadmaps at the community level.
Mr Bizuneh, however, noted that the CSC was a dynamic tool that changes in line with strategic priorities.
According to Mr Bizuneh, between 2012 and 2017, 29 countries had developed Score Cards (SC) with 25 countries at the implementation stage of the SC for malaria control and elimination.
The day’s meeting which was organised by the GHS brought together stakeholders in the health sector to share, exchange and deliberate on issues that would help Ghana to understand the global language of SC and its importance to national development.