Ghana trains over 8,000 nurses within 10 years – Minister

NursesThe number of nurses graduating from health institutions in the country rose from 3,506 in 2009 to 8,507 in 2013, Dr Kwaku Agyemang Mensah, the Minister of Health has stated.

The figure, representing 143 percentage increase in the number of trained nurses within the period, showed the Health Ministry’s efforts since the last 10 years to increase intake into all health training institutions, he said.

Dr Mensah made the statement at the opening of the Ninth National Conference and Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Heads of Health Training Institutions (COHHETI) on Tuesday in Sunyani.

The four-day Conference, being attended by 70 participants on the theme: “Pursuing Quality Health-The Role of the Health Training Institutions” aimed among others to create a forum for general discussions on matters affecting the administration and organization of health training institutions for development and progress.

Dr Mensah assured the Ministry of Health (MoH) was working harder to adequately resource all health training institutions to enable them churn out quality health personnel for quality health service delivery in the country.

This he explained was because as training institutions, their core mandate was to produce the needed human resources, both in quantity and quality.

The Health Minister said quality training of health professionals could only be achieved through the provision of excellent practical training schemes like clinical work, demonstrations and field work.

Dr Mensah said the MoH had therefore made conscious effort to recruit qualified tutors for all the training institutions, saying that the tutors had been supported to pursue higher education and necessary workshops and update courses such as the recently held workshop for midwifery tutors on Emergency Obstetric care and Family Planning.

He said the MoH had also adopted the public/private partnership (PPP) policy of government to rehabilitate and expand the Schools infrastructure and equip them with modern teaching and learning facilities.

The Ministry’s determination to ensure the School’s were upgraded to award University diplomas were all geared towards ensuring quality training, the Health Minister added.

Dr Mensah reminded the Heads that to bridge the gap between academia and service, the Ministry was going to enforce the policy of tutors spending time in the clinical areas to sharpen their skills to enhance effective teaching.

He added that would expose the service personnel to new best practices as the tutors work with them on the wards.

The Health Minister said to ensure graduates were evenly distributed countrywide to provide quality health, the Ministry had made it a policy to guarantee each region had its full complement of all the training programmes.

Pimapim Yaw Kagbrese V, the Paramount Chief of Yeji and President of Brong-Ahafo Regional House of Chiefs who presided appealed to health personnel not to depart for abroad to seek greener pastures but should stay and work for the country to attain a better health service delivery. GNA

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