Govt promises to absorb 14,000 nurses, Feb.

The Ministry of Health (MoH) has assured of absorbing about 14,000 nurses into the health sector in February next year to help boost human resource capacity.

The sector minister, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu who explained that government was unable to post graduate nurses this year because of financial constraints indicated that all things being equal, the nurses should be employed by next year.

“We were awaiting clearance from the Ministry of Finance, that is why we could not employ them but we are getting positive indications now, so hopefully about 14,000 of them will be employed by February,” he hinted.

The minister was speaking in a media interview in Accra yesterday at the opening of the 3rd ECOWAS Best Practices Forum in health.

The three-day conference, gathering health experts, researchers, civil society groups in the health sector and heads of health institutions on the sub-region, aimed at deliberating on best practices among member states to produce positive health outcomes at an accelerated rate.

It was on the theme; “Promoting multi-sectorality collaboration to achieve maternal, newborn, child and adolescent and youth health-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”

Addressing the conference, the minister reiterated government’s commitment to partner with key stakeholders in developing and implementing the needed interventions to improve quality healthcare delivery.

He said Ghana identified maternal, new-born child and adolescent health as issues of key priority in the health sector as they affected the core of the population “which will over time form the nation’s work force.”

Mr Agyeman-Manu therefore observed the need for a united front to combat the many health issues confronting the country saying “good health is not only a human welfare issue but a fundamental objective of socio-economic development.”

“It is high time we realise that by finding points of convergence in policies, strategies, interventions, information and resource sharing, we will maximise our impact and optimise the use of resources thereby free up some for investment in other areas of national development,” he urged.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) Country Director, Dr Owen Kaluwa, in a remark highlighted maternal, child and adolescent health as “foundation of good health” in every sphere.

According to him, out of 15 countries only three on the sub-region had met the Millennium Development Goal of eliminating maternal mortality by 2015 with most countries stagnating when it came to neonatal mortality.

Dr Kaluwa thus called for governmental, private and multi-sector collaboration to pool resources, knowledge and expertise together to attain shared goals in health and achieve SDG goal three.

He further called for proper documentation of strides made in health care delivery among member states saying, “we need to have accurate documentation so that we can share best practices with each other to effectively deliver on healthcare.”

The Director General of the West African Health Organisation (WAHO), Professor Stanley Okolo on his part encouraged member states to establish best practices committee to leverage on interventions showcased at the conference to improve the health of citizens.

By Abigail Annoh

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