Ghana: Free Primary Health Care will be the Single Biggest Social Intervention

Former Minister of Communication, Dr Edward Kofi Omane Boamah

Accra, Ghana, September 25, 2020//-The Free Primary Health Care proposed by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) will be the single biggest social intervention programme if it gets implemented next year.

 Dr Edward Kofi Omane Boamah, a Medical Doctor, Health Policy, Planning and Financing Analyst & Former Minister for Communications made this known when he spoke at a virtual Leadership Dialogue Series organized by the Centre for Social Justice in Accra.

He is encouraged that former President John Dramani Mahama and flagbearer of NDC in the December election seeks to implement Free Primary Health Care for all Ghanaians, including the young and the elderly.

This is because there are still many Ghanaians who cannot afford the cost of basic health care.

Primary Health Care which was proposed by the World Health Organisation 42 years ago, advances the frontiers of social justice – inclusivity. It will serve as a fitting linchpin for the realisation of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 3, Health for All.

All Ghanaians deserve quality health care. This is why Dr Omane Boamah agrees with the WHO’s Primary Health Care Declaration that, “The attainment of the highest possible level of health is a most important worldwide social goal whose realisation requires the action of many other social and economic sectors in addition to health”. (WHO, 1978).

Fortunately, the world led by the United Nations is back to where we were in 1978 with Primary Health Care as declared in Alma Ata, Kazakhstan.

This is because the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is a relevant drift away from the vertical nature of the Millennium Development Goals. SDG 3 adopts a health system and multi-sectoral approach and guarantees sustainable development.

Speaking on the topic: ‘Social Democracy Meaningless Slogan Or Vehicle For Transformation In Ghana?, he was happy when Mr Mahama announced Free Primary Health Care for all Ghanaians as a significant policy direction for his incoming administration.

Key promises in the NDC Manifesto

The direct and indirect benefits are endless. From the above, it stands to reason that the benefits basket of Free Primary Health Care should include free health screening for non-communicable diseases like diabetes mellitus, hypertension and cancers, according to him.

“With this, cost as a barrier to accessing care at the primary level will be eliminated. Furthermore, screening will lead to early detection in order for the most common illnesses afflicting majority of Ghanaians to be treated early at lower cost even before they develop complications”.

Dr Omane Boamah emphasized: “From CHPS compounds to district hospitals will be free to attain Universal Health Care”.

He concluded with an emphatic statement that social democracy is a practical vehicle for transformation not a meaningless slogan.

African Eye Report

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