The Government, together with its development partners, is working to improve the country’s diagnostic capacity through the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Programme (CLIP).
Mr. Kwaku Agyeman Manu, Minister of Health, who announced this in Fumeasua, near Ejisu, said the Government believed that without good health laboratory systems and competent medical laboratory professionals, the country’s health system would be at risk.
In an address read on his behalf at the opening of the 2022 annual general congress of the Ghana Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists (GAMLS) in the Ashanti Region, Mr Agyeman Manu said the world was now in the era of evidence-based medicine where diagnostics remained paramount.
It was, therefore, important to commit resources to train and build capacities of medical laboratory professionals and provide the requisite infrastructure and logistics for them at all levels, to enable them to discharge their duties efficiently to promote the health of the citizenry.
The five-day congress is on the theme: “Capacity Enhancement of Medical Laboratory Practice in Ghana; Cornerstone of Future Pandemic Response.”
The Minister said the current double-burden of non-communicable and infectious diseases, required that professional practice of medical laboratory scientists in the world and Ghana in particular, was of the highest quality and could stand the test of time.
Capacity enhancement, he added accelerated standardization, which included the process of implementing and developing technical standards based on consensus of different parties.
Mr. Agyeman Manu said training and professional skills enhancement through further education and specialization were the surest ways of building on knowledge and attaining standardization.
He said with the establishment of the West African Post-graduate college of medical laboratory science and several other post-graduate courses and specialties, Ghana expects to see more medical laboratory professional specialists to offer efficient services to the people.
He commended medical laboratory scientists for their frontline role during the COVID-19 outbreak and urged them not to rest since there were other emerging public health challenges such as the outbreak of Marburg and Monkey pox diseases.
Mr. Simon Osei Mensah, Ashanti Regional Minister, said medical laboratory practice played key role in quality healthcare delivery.
He said the Government was committed to making quality healthcare delivery accessible and affordable to all Ghanaians to help improve the health of the people and urged medical laboratory scientists to devise innovative strategies to improve on their practice.
Dr. Abu Abudu Rahamani, President of GAMLS, called on the Government to support medical laboratory specialist training for the country and recognize the products of the college with the needed roles to function.
He also called on health regulatory agencies, especially the health Facilities Regulatory Agency (HeFRA) to ensure that only qualified professionals performed tests in facilities they accredited even in the quest for increasing access to healthcare.