Post graduate medical college in the offing
Mr Dani Baah, Deputy Minister of Health said on Friday that as part of the government's human resource development within the health sector, plans are far advanced for the establishment of a post graduate college for further training of doctors.
A Bill to this effect, which has been approved by Cabinet would soon be presented to Parliament to be passed.
Mr Baah was contributing to discussions on human resource development and technical assistance in the health sector when the visiting Dutch Minister for Development Cooperation, Ms Eveline Herfkens, met a government delegation in Sunyani.
The college, when established, would be a major step to check the brain drain in the sector since the desire to upgrade their professional skills in such institutions overseas has contributed to the phenomenon, the Deputy Minister said.
He said to make the project a reality the ministry would need huge foreign assistance in funding and trained personnel to teach at the college. A rector for the college had been appointed while funds for the take-off of the programmes would be included in the 2002 national budget.
The Deputy Minister said both specialists and general practitioners in district and regional hospitals would benefit from the programme, after which general practitioners would be made "family doctors".
Ms Herfkens assured the country of her government's support in the health sector, especially in the training and provision of equipment. She said in all cases, the government had the option to choose the type of assistance it needed and added that prudent spending would make assistance more effective.
She noted that a new partnership between donor countries and recipients was geared towards good policies that would eliminate waste.
"It is up to you to decide how donations must be used for the benefit of the people, but we must ensure that we do not put all our eggs in one basket," she cautioned, adding "we are only looking for effective partnership".
Mr Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey, Minister of Presidential Affairs and leader of the delegation, spoke about the effects of brain drain of trained professionals, including personnel in the health sector, on the national economy and said the government would evolve measures to arrest the situation.
Dr Kofi Asare, Brong Ahafo Regional Director of Health, said while it was prudent to channel assistance to the training of local doctors, there was the need to retain expatriate doctors until enough local ones had been trained.