First degree will soon become the minimum requirement for practicing nurses and midwives – Health Minister
The Ministry of Health says health training institutions at all levels will soon be upgraded to run a four-year bachelor’s degree programme to meet the changing health care needs of the country.
According to the Rector of the College of Nursing and Midwifery, Hannah Akua Oparebea Acquah, the idea is to ensure that a bachelor’s degree becomes the minimum qualification for practicing nurses and midwives while fading out diploma and certificate holders.
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She was speaking on behalf of the Health Minister, Kwaku Agyemang Manu at the 14th annual general meeting of the Conference of Heads of Health Training Institutions at Koforidua in the Eastern Region.
The 14th annual general meeting of the Conference of Heads of Health Training Institutions (COHHETI) was under the theme, ‘Repositioning the health training institutions towards universal health coverage.’
The role of health training institutions is to create a forum for discussing issues such as equipping them to churn out quality health personnel.
Various heads of institutions that run certificate and diploma programmes attended the meeting to take stock of their performances and how to improve upon them.
Hannah Oparebea Acquah, addressing the gathering, noted that a stakeholder consultation will soon take place to develop policies as part of plans to upgrade all health training Institutions into fully-fledged tertiary schools.
This, according to her, will help meet the changing demands of the public.
“As we are all aware, there are calls for upgrade of health Institutions into the tertiary status to improve nursing and midwifery training education and also to meet the changing healthcare needs of the public. This means that eventually, a first degree will be the minimum requirement at any level of our health education system.
“To achieve this feat, there should be a broader stakeholder consultation and engagement that will see to the development of a policy that will make all health training fully-fledged tertiary institutions,” she explained
The Eastern Regional Director of the Ghana Health Service, Dr Winfred Ofosu, who chaired the conference, in his remarks lauded the sterling leadership skills of heads of health training schools in spite of the high demand for admission of nurses and midwives.
Whilst acknowledging the lack of infrastructure and learning, Dr Ofosu was impressed with how well the heads have used IGF to improve their schools.
“The high demand for nurses and midwives put a lot of constraints on the principals and the tutors but with commitment, dedication, and hard work, you have made all of us proud by delivering the numbers. This laudable achievement is against the backdrop of limited infrastructure, challenges with teaching and learning accommodation, transport for supervision of fieldwork, we applaud your sterling leadership and sacrifices.
“Infrastructure remains the challenge for many health training institutions but the efforts you made as institutions and their stakeholders have been very impressive,” he stated.
Some 10 individuals were honoured by the Conference of Heads of Health Training Institutions for their contributions to the success of the organisation.
They include former Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Dr. Ebenezer Appiah-Denkyira, Dr. Christopher Beyere, a lecturer at the Catholic university college, and 2020 NDC parliamentary candidate for Techiman South, Dr. Nana Yaw Antwi Boasiako, Mr. James Yambor, Madam Sophia Agyei-Aye, and Mrs. Josephine Ansu-Gyeabour.
The rest are Mr. Jones Ofosu, Dr. James Antwi, Mrs. Gladys Faybian, and Mr. Felix Nyante.