Some of the participants
Deputy Minister of Finance, Abena Osei-Asare, has assured members of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) that the government would soon sign an agreement geared towards renewing the conditions of service of medical practitioners in the country.
“We are actively engaging in discussions surrounding the conditions of service and we will be signing an agreement moving forward,” she told the medical doctors.
She continued, “We have made some progress and very soon the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission will be calling a meeting to kickstart the operationalization or the finalization of your new conditions of service”.
She said this at the opening ceremony of the 65th Annual General Conference of the GMA held in Takoradi.
It was on the theme, “Advancing Universal Health Coverage: Who Cares for the Health Worker”.
She indicated that government would consider reinstating the vehicle importation tax waver for health workers to ease their transportation burden.
The President of the GMA, Dr. Frank Serebour indicated that the chosen theme for the conference implied that all was not well with medical practitioners.
“We are often regarded as super human beings and as such immune to sickness. But our work exposes us to lots of hazards,” he revealed.
He mentioned that medical doctors should not be made to pay the ultimate price of losing their lives in their quest to take care of the vulnerable adding “Someone must care for the health worker”.
He raised concerns about the impact of illegal small-scale mining also called “galamsey” on the health of the populace and asked for urgent intervention.
Nana Kobina Nketsia V who was the keynote speaker suggested that public office holders, particularly, politicians should be made to sign an undertaking not to seek medical treatment outside the country.
“Anybody who picks up a public appointment must also sign that he or she is not going to be treated outside Ghana. If the Ghana medical service cannot treat you, fix it”, he pointed out.
From Emmanuel Opoku, Takoradi