The Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association has urged government to prioritize employment of graduate Nurses and Midwives (NMA) to bridge the Nurse/Patient ratio gap in the country.According to the Association, statistics revealed that the country’s current Nurse/Patient ratio stands at 1:22, and would need not less than 38,000 nurses and midwives to fill the deficit.
Mr Kwaku Asante-Krobea, President of the Association, said this at the 17th celebration of the International Nurses Day on the theme; “Health Implications of Galamsey and the Attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals; Nurses and Midwives Acting in one Voice with Stakeholders”.
He urged government to fully restore the allowances of trainee nurses and midwives as promised as well as the restoration of tax-waver on imported cars to Nurses and Midwives which was abolished by the previous government.
The President appealed to government to reimburse all health facilities with National Health Insurance Scheme indebtedness to make them more functional and resilient to provide better health care services to the citizenry.
He called on government to establish and retain the directorate of Nursing and Midwifery at the Ministry to enable the office advice the sector Minister on policy issues affecting the sector.
The Association was of the view that bonding of trainee Nurses and Midwives should not be tied to employment of graduate and that in the light of fewer Nurses and Midwives delivering care, graduate employment should be unconditional.
He noted that Nurses and Midwives were vital component of any reliable health care organization striving for zero patient harm and quality health care.
Mr Asante-Krobea explained that Nurses and Midwives were the checks and balances of health care and 85 percent of the public had ranked them number one in honesty and ethics for the past 15 years in many nations across the world.
He admitted that the standards of health care has fallen over the years, an outcome that has negative implications on quality of health care, and attributed it to the poor attitude of some nurses towards their client in service delivery.
Mr Asante-Krobea assured the public of the association’s commitment to improve health systems across the country and fight the global burden of diseases.
Kobby Blay is the chief health editor at Ghanahealthnest.com. A professional practicing nurse with specialty in mental health and focus for health communications, public health, medical/documentary photography, ICT and systems perspective for health improvement.