‘Include Policymakers In Research Design’

Dr. Anarfi Asamoah-Baah

A former Deputy Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO) is encouraging scientists to open up and involve policymakers in research works.

Speaking at a scientific conference dubbed ‘Towards Access 2030’ initiative in Kumasi, Dr. Anarfi Asamoah-Baah said that scientists opening up will facilitate acceptance and implementation of outcomes for the desired impact on development.

“As a country, we’ve to pay much attention to the importance of research. A lot of research is done by academia and the university and they’re not used by policymakers partly because the policymakers are not involved in the design of the research,” he observed.

Dr. Asamoah-Baah stated that the academia should be more interested in using their studies to address local development challenges instead of rushing to publish.

He, however, indicated that government’s commitment to research is necessary.

 “In academia, the way to advance your career and promotion is to publish. Unfortunately, many types of research are not designed to solve problems on the ground,” he mentioned.

DrAsamoah-Baah stressed that research costs money and it is important for the government to give support because researchers need the freedom to conduct the research.

WHO’s ‘Towards Access 2030’ initiative is meant to give more targeted support to member states for achieving global and national health objectives.

The conference was jointly organised by College of Health Sciences of Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology and Convention of Biomedical Research Ghana.

It is the eighth for the College of Health Sciences and 12th for Convention of Biomedical Research Ghana.

The Dean of Public Health, KNUST, Prof. Ellis Owusu-Dabo, stated that the concept demands a multi-disciplinary approach to examine various roles for universal health.

“Universal healthcare is not the prerogative of one category of health workers but it is the obligation of all and sundry within the health sector,” he stressed.

The conference featured a poster presentation of over 190 research findings.

The Provost of the College, Prof. Yaw Adu-Sarkodie, entreated the Ghana Health Service (GHS) to constantly interact to address pertinent service delivery issues.

“We don’t speak to each other; often we don’t have dialogues with the health service to improve service provision. They can make their research priorities known to us so we adequately address them,” he said