The 38th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Society of Private Medical and Dental Practitioners –Ghana opened in Accra on Friday.
The National President of the group, Dr. Isaac C.N. Morrison, who opened the meeting said, the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aimed at ending poverty, protecting the planet and ensuring prosperity had direct and indirect implication on health and therefore, called for innovative methods in care delivery which could only be achieved by the public sector collaborating with the private sector.
He said health care delivery in many countries were carried out in seven identifiable sectors namely, public sector, private self financing, quasi- governmental agencies, security services, traditional herbal practitioners, faith based institutions and allied and unorthodox practitioners.
Dr. Morrison indicated that as a result of the numerous challenges in the sector, no simple entity would be able to achieve those lofty goals envisaged by the SDGs.
The President noted, that the gap between the public and private sector in health care could be bridged if government took steps to harness the potential in the private sector.
“There exist huge potentials in the private sector which could be harnessed to move the universal health coverage agenda forward,” he said.
Dr. Morrison charged members to take stock of their activities towards placing themselves strategically to meet the wind of change that was blowing.
“We need to think outside the box and take advantage of the existing market by developing the needed manpower to meet the challenges ahead,” he added.
He urged the government and the Ministry of Health to extend some of its research funds to the association to build the capacity of members.
He urged them to eschew practical interests and take their destiny into their own hands “or else become endangered species”.
The General Secretary of the Ghana Association of Quasi Government Health Institutions, Dr. Emmanuel Tsegah, urged health care givers to open up and compare notes in order to collectively address their weaknesses, review institutional structures towards supporting the various institutions to specialise in areas of referrals,support services, and handling of emergencies.
He urged health care professionals to remain united in order to champion the crusade that would ensure better health care for Ghanaians adding that “it is only when we are fully united in our quest to fight the common goal that our collective aspirations could be achieved.
The President of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP) Dr. Eben Ewusi-Emmim, urged the association to take good care of themselves in order to be fit enough to treat others.
The four–day event is on the theme: “Rising up to the challenges posed by occupational health issues in Ghana and impact on industry.”
By Lawrence Vomafa-Akpalu