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Put in place appropriate incentives to attract and retain health workers in rural areas – GMA

The Vice President of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has pleaded with the government to put in place appropriate monetary and non-monetary incentive schemes to attract and retain health workers in disadvantaged communities.

According to Dr. Justice Yankson, the government has not done enough to ensure that doctors and nurses agree to be posted to remote communities.

speaking on Featured Story On Friday, he stressed that without those incentives, “these problems would be compounded.”

“Our constitution directs the state to ensure that the people of Ghana have access to medical care. Look, you can’t force a professional or anyone to work for you as an employer and the government as an employer, you have to know that for a fact. Same situation, you also cannot force an employer to employ you.

“Once the state is enjoined to provide us with the best in terms of health care, it is the duty of the state to ensure that it is able to train and attract and retain these doctors” , did he declare.

Dr. Yankson said the government’s inability to attract and retain doctors is prompting some doctors to seek greener pastures outside the country.

“Basic things don’t work. You sign a basic employment contract with the employer and it will not be implemented, you go to the workplace and sometimes the facilities that should be there for you to work just aren’t there. Sometimes the opportunities for you to improve through career progression don’t even exist, so we must not isolate doctors and with all due respect, let it feel like we are the only ones refusing to go places,” he told Evans Mensah. .

He however mentioned that the government has recently formed a committee through the Ministry of Health and the Ghana Health Service to create a document of this nature, adding that the GMA hopes that the document will be completed and implemented. to the letter.

His remarks follow President Akufo Addo’s speech on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the University of Ghana Medical School (UGMS) on Friday, in which he lamented the refusal of some doctors and dentists to accept d being posted to disadvantaged areas of the country, a situation he described. a “distressing”.

According to President Akufo-Addo, development is hampering the effective delivery of health care in these areas.

In response, Dr Yankson said physicians are already sacrificing as they face certain challenges like the unavailability of specialized equipment needed to work.

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