President Akufo-Addo has cut the sod for the commencement of works on the 111 hospitals project saying his vision is to help make the country a center of excellence for medical care in West Africa.
“Beyond the building of these new healthcare facilities, my vision is to help make Ghana the center of excellence for medical care in West Africa by 2030, leveraging on Ghana’s favourable status in the Region as the most peaceful country in West Africa, a beacon of democracy on the continent and a land of opportunity,” he said at the ceremony held at Trede, in the Atwima Kwawoma District of the Ashanti Region, today.
President Akufo-Addo said his government will build on the already existing healthcare foundation and include two additional projects, currently in the planning stage.
These include the Trauma and Acute Pain Center and a new surgical services block with modern in-patient facilities in the Korle-bu Teaching Hospital (KBTH) to contribute to its transformation into modern world class teaching hospital.
Further investments are being made at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Kumasi, beginning with the new 550 bed Maternity and Children Block, he said.
“Specialized center for infectious diseases, orthopaedics, cancer treatment, cardiovascular health, specialist eyecare, amongst others will be assigned to some of the regional hospitals, including those to be constructed under Agenda 111,” he stated.
President Akufo-Addo said whilst existing facilities are being upgraded, ‘we shall invest in medical education and training of our health personnel including expanding the use of IT for medical diagnosis and treatment in the Agenda 111 healthcare facilities being developed’.
Under the Public Private Partnership, the President said the Ghana Medical Corps, a volunteer corps of medical specialists will be established by 2023 so, the country can tap into the skills and resources of Ghanaians and non-Ghanaians locally and abroad, using IT and telemedicine to support the delivery of healthcare and training.
The partnership will offer, in particular, to Ghanaians medical experts’ resident outside Ghana, the opportunity to give back to their motherland in ways that will support and expand healthcare delivery.
“All these programmes, collectively will position Ghana as a leading medical travel destination in West Africa with the potential to add some $2 billion to the nation’s GDP by 2030 and in the process create some 50,000 jobs in the sector,” he noted.
President Akufo-Addo said the huge investments being made into the country’s healthcare system is reinforced by the fact that West Africa by 2030 will have a population of half a billion people.
“The goal is thus to position Ghana as an attractive medical destination, with excellent medical facilities, for our neighbours to patronize.
Several countries have benefited from international medical travel. Benefits to these countries include enhanced GDP growth, improved healthcare infrastructure, foreign direct investment, tourism promotion and importantly halting the brain drain of skilled medical professionals,” he added.
By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri