Don’t disclose patients’ illnesses to third parties - KATH CEO

BY: Daniel Kenu
Some allied health graduates taking an oath during  the induction and oath-swearing ceremony at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi over the weekend
Some allied health graduates taking an oath during the induction and oath-swearing ceremony at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi over the weekend

The Chief Executive Officer of the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH), Dr Oheneba Danso, has warned health professionals against disclosing the ailment of patients to third parties.

According to him, apart from it being unethical, health professionals must be wary of the legal implications.

Speaking at the induction and oath-swearing ceremony for allied health graduates at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi last Saturday, Dr Danso said many Ghanaians were now awake to their legal rights and the health professionals could ruin their careers with the slight negligence.

The ceremony was on the theme: “Achieving the health-related sustainable development goals: The role of the allied health professional”.

Dr Danso expressed concern that about 70 per cent of trained allied health professionals were located in Accra and Kumasi alone, leaving the rest of the regions to suffer.


He said it was time for an even distribution of health personnel across the country, with a key focus on deprived areas.

Dialogue

The Ashanti Regional Minister, Mr Simon Osei-Mensah, reiterated the need for the Ghana Medical Council and the Allied Health Professions Council to put in place stringent measures to weed out quack practitioners within the system.

He said the risk caused by such practitioners in recent times to human life had been alarming and called for immediate action to be taken to stamp out the menace.

Touching on a number of health-related issues, the Minister urged the newly sworn-in professionals to resort to dialogue, rather than the frequent strike actions, in putting across their grievance.

Rather than picketing at the Ministry of Health to press home their demands, he said, the leadership should find a way of engaging the government, using negotiating skills, including cajoling, to achieve their results.

Mr Osei-Mensah pleaded with the 1,120 health professionals, including laboratory technicians and field technicians, to accept posting to the rural areas because that was where their services would be needed most.

Prof. Opoku-Okrah

An associate professor in Haematology and Immunohaematology, Prof. Clement Opoku-Okrah, called for stimulation to attract the best form of investment to the sector to make it attractive and well-paying.

He said security and the protection of the health workforce must not be compromised, siting the recent attack on the CEO of the Tamale Teaching Hospital as an example.

Prof. Opoku-Okrah said such an incident and the lack of proper housing for health workers discouraged people from accepting posting to the rural areas.

The acting Registrar of the Allied Health Professions Council, Dr Samuel Yaw Opoku, said continuous training and education was the key ingredient that could make the graduates more relevant to the profession.

He urged them never to cease studying because it was the only thing that could make them address challenges in the future.