The Nursing and Midwifery Training College (NMTC), School of Hygiene and Public Health Nurses School of the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital (KBTH) have admitted 538 students into separate professional programmes.
Of the number, 366 were admitted into the NMTC, 114 to the Public/Community Health Nurses School and 58 to the School of Hygiene.
At a joint matriculation ceremony in Accra on Thursday, Acting Head of the Health Training Institutions of the Ministry of Health, Mrs Rebecca Akorley challenged the students to commit to delivering quality healthcare wherever they found themselves.
She deplored the mal-distribution and refusal of health staff to accept postings to deprived areas across the country as an indictment on Ghana’s aim to achieve universal health coverage (UHC) in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
“It is the expectation of the Ministry that this oath you have taken today is a commitment to deliver quality healthcare to all without discrimination and I therefore urge you to accept postings to wherever your services will be needed after the training,” she advised.
Mrs Akorley while imploring the fresh students to aim for higher heights in their line of profession asked them to be mindful of the values and ethics to be able to go the extra mile in delivering quality care to patients.
“Never be happy with this level of health education after you have graduated. The health sector is a place of varied specialists with opportunities for higher learning so keep changing your level in pursuit of your health career.
“This is rewarding not only for you but for the nation,” she stated.
Principal of the Accra School of Hygiene, Mr Isaac Newton Dzahene noted that challenges of the three schools are expected to escalate judging from the increased admissions this year.
He mentioned limited infrastructure in all three schools to adequately serve students, high utility tariffs coupled with inadequate funding from government which keeps eroding internally generated funds supposed to help the smooth running of the schools.
Of particular concern to him was the exclusion of students of the School of Hygiene from the student trainee allowances package given by government, a situation he said had resulted in declining numbers to the school.
“We respectfully appeal to the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources, for that matter government, to give this matter a second thought to include the School of Hygiene students into the restoration of allowances in order to avert the extinction and collapse of these very important professions in our national discourse.”
Mr Dzahene entreated the fresh students to be of good behaviour, work hard and be respectful to school authorities while abiding by all rules and regulations to have a smooth academic journey.
BY ABIGAIL ANNOH