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Certified Registered Anaesthetists Call For "Sub-Specialities"
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Mr Jacob Wumbei, President, Ghana Association of Certified Registered Anaesthetists (GACRA) has appealed to Government to establish “sub-specialities” of the practice to enhance knowledge and increase the competence of professionals.

He said the lack of “sub-specialities” such as paediatric anaesthesia, obstetric anaesthesia and intensive care were the “greatest disincentive” to the profession.

Mr Wumbei said the profession was introduced in Ghana in 1945 after the Second World War and was a crucial service during general surgeries, maternal deliveries and other emergencies, yet the nation could only boast of about 50 doctor anaesthetists.

He was addressing the Association’s 12th Biennial Congress and Scientific Session in Ho, which was on the theme: “The Role of Anaesthesia in Surgery for National Development”.

He said very few hospitals delivered specialised anaesthesia services, a situation which had burdened the already ill-remunerated professionals.

Mr Wumbei said the Greater Accra region remained the only region with doctor anaesthetics yet almost all hospitals in Ghana were surgically operational.

He cried foul over the poor carrier path ways, “obsolete” job description, the lack of anaesthesia equipment, and the lengthy periods it took for house officers to be granted anaesthetic professional statuses.

Mr Wumbei further said key players such as the Ministry of Health and the Ghana Health Service, at all levels, had refused to “recognise anaesthetic professionals within the administrative set” and asked that the 3013 Act of Parliament granting them professional status be respected.

“Any attempt to amend the Act would not be tolerated. We shall fight till the last breath, any attempt to be given a name that does not befit us”, he stated.

Mr Kwaku Agyemang Manu, Minister of Health, in a speech read on his behalf said, the availability of anaesthetic services at first referral level facilities could help reduce complications and fatalities.

He said efforts to improve anaesthesia services must include increasing awareness on their “critical and important” role, and also their contributions to reducing mortality and morbidity.

Mr Manu said Government would implement policies to retain an anaesthetic workforce even in the remote areas, and would as well introduce a multi-sectional approach to address the “inadequately trained and insufficient” workforce.

He also underscored the need for the Health Ministry to ease access to higher education for Certified Registered Anaesthetists and help address the issue of sub-specialization.

Mr Manu gave the assurance that the MOH would endeavour to provide serviceable environment with well-resourced training programmes, equipment and befitting remuneration.
Source: GNA

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