President of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), Dr Frank Ankobeah, has welcomed news of the government’s decision to build some 111 hospitals nationwide to improve the country’s healthcare system.
Although he is excited about the development and assured the readiness of healthcare workers to labour in these hospitals, he noted, “As we speak now, Ghana does not have healthcare systems nationwide, and this project will help us strengthen it. As we always say, it is people who will work in these facilities, and we need healthcare professionals to do that.
We already have specialists, but we need to train more of them. We have pharmacists, nurses, medical lab technicians, doctors, etc., but we need to train more to meet the demand, which will go up soon enough. And we need good managers to take care of these hospitals so that we don’t hear that they have broken down after a year of completion.”
Asked if the government consulted the GMA on the specifications for these hospitals, he answered in the negative. He believes the government is fully aware of these details and will do the needful. “We all know what a district hospital should be and how it’s supposed to be furnished. Therefore the government does not need to consult us on what should be put in these hospitals.”
According to him, areas in which these healthcare facilities will be situated must have the necessary social amenities “that will encourage health personnel posted there.”
Dr Ankobeah indicated that as human development is being looked at, “then we should look at the preventive aspects of diseases as well. If we build hospitals alright and we don’t work on preventing illness, then the hospitals will be overwhelmed.”
He said in an interview with Samuel Eshun on the Happy Morning Show aired on e.TV Ghana and Happy98.9FM.
The government will begin constructing hospitals under the “Agenda 111 project” on Tuesday, August 17, 2021.
The entire project includes:
111 district hospitals.
Seven new regional hospitals.
Two additional mental health hospitals to be located in the middle and southern belts.
The redevelopment of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital.