Mastercard Higher Education Health Collaborative of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) has engaged policy-level stakeholders in Ghana’s health sector to share ideas on ways to empower the next generation of healthcare workers.
Principal Investigator on the project, Prof. Ellis Owusu-Dabo says the meeting sets the stage to improve universal healthcare coverage.
“This, we intend to do, by creating employment, empowering the next generation of healthcare workers through the various ecosystems we will create and through entrepreneurship.
“We seek to do this by coming up with programmes that will help the average Ghanaian health worker to be empowered through skills, competencies and knowledge and bring health to the doorstep of the average Ghanaian,” he said.
The objectives of the Higher Education Collaborative in Health are to Build and strengthen the capacity of healthcare students and professionals to meet the growing demand for Primary Health Care (PHC) in the health sector; Enable students to acquire advanced skills in Africa across a broad range of disciplines critical for sustainable health sector growth and transformation; Optimize entrepreneurial ecosystems in and through universities in Africa to launch and scale health start-ups to create jobs; Develop a dynamic, sustainable, long-term network of leading African universities, alumni, government agencies, health care start-ups, and private sector partners working together to create dignified and fulfilling jobs across health ecosystems.
The project will further develop a dynamic, sustainable, long-term network of leading African universities, alumni and government agencies, healthcare start-ups, and private sector partners working together to create dignified and fulfilling jobs across health ecosystems in the next ten years.
KNUST is one of the eight partners of the Higher Education Collaborative in Health with the aim to contribute to all three pillars of the health strategy: Health Employment, Health Entrepreneurship, and Health Ecosystems.
Pillar Coordinator, Health Entrepreneurship, Prof. Wilberforce Owusu-Ansah stressed the need to create entrepreneurial opportunities in the health sector.
“Some people look at entrepreneurship from business start-ups but we want to look at from setting up your own business and being entrepreneurial wherever you find yourself,” he said.
The stakeholders were happy with the insight from the meeting.
Deputy Director of policy planning, Monitoring and Evaluation at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, Ms. Bernice Ofosu was impressed with the presentations and asked the project team to consider rolling out courses targeting tertiary health facilities.
She also called for courses in medical tourism to meet the growing demand.
“Generally, the programme has been great. Even though Ghana is focusing on primary healthcare, tertiary healthcare is also very important when it comes to a continuum of care. So, they should consider courses that can enhance leadership and change culture when it comes to tertiary–level facilities,” she said.
“Ghana is considering medical tourism. There can be courses in services packaging for not only Ghanaians but people in the sub-region,” she added.
Prof. Owusu-Dabo hinted at continuous engagement with the stakeholders to ensure the success of the project.
“We seek to collaborate with these institutions who will be part of the panel of interviewers to help implement the ideals of the Collaborative,” he said.
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