Female doctors in Ghana have been urged to address the key health issues of women to help save them from avoidable deaths.
Professor Efua Nkrumah, Dean, International Programmes and External Linkages at the Takoradi Technical University (TTU), who made the call, noted that breast and cervical cancer continued to be a major health issue for women.
She said hospitals continued to record maternal related deaths, which could have been prevented if there was increased access to family planning and other basic health services.
Speaking at the National Triennial General Meeting of the Medical Women Association of Ghana (MWAG) in Takoradi at the weekend, Prof. Nkrumah said women understood women issues better and urged the female doctors to do all they could to help their fellow women.
The event, held on the theme, “Young Women, young doctors, our inspiration, our future,” allowed members to deliberate on critical issues that promoted health and national development.
It also took stock of the activities of the Association in the period under review and strategised on how to strengthen the association to impact lives.
Prof Nkrumah underscored the need for female doctors to show maximum concern for the health needs of women.
Dr Marion Okoh-Owusu, National President of MWAG, said the Association had evolved from a small group to become a national association of female doctors in Ghana and abroad.
She said MWAG had provided mentorship support to young females, especially to young doctors as well as medical students, and impacted the lives of many across the country.
She encouraged female doctors to take up leadership positions in the health services to contribute and bring about the changes that they desired.
Giving the highlights of activities in the period under review, Dr Okoh-Owusu said MWAG championed the institution of the national Women’s Physicians Day in honour of the first female doctor while the “Lady Start” programme was re-launched and allowed doctors to reach out to young girls that signed up to the project via zoom.
She gave the assurance that the association would continue to offer professional training and mentorship to young doctors and medical students, intensify its outreach programmes to impact more lives and contribute to the development of the health sector.
Mr Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, Western Regional Minister, commended MWAG for the continuous provision of professional development training for members, mentoring young doctors as well as medical students and undertaking special philanthropic projects.
In a speech read on his behalf by Madam Joyce Obiri Yeboah, Director, Department of Community Development at the WRCC, the Minster said activities of the female doctors such as the free medical outreaches in hard-to-reach communities, annual cervical cancer screening and outbreak response initiatives, among others, benefited the people.
He said though women faced a lot of social-cultural barriers in their career choices, the female doctors had proven that when given the opportunity, women could play central roles in healthcare, academia, policy-making, planning and contribute to social development.
He urged the association to continue to provide career and mentoring programmes for young doctors and medical students and inspire them to learn to be the best at what they do.
In her solidarity message, Dr Gifty Amugi, Western Regional Deputy Director in Charge of Public Health, Ghana Health Service (GHS), said the passion and the motherly love of women often made them excel in the medical profession.
Dr Charlotte Smith, Western Regional Branch President of MWAG, noted that female medical doctors had positively impacted and continue to impact Ghana’s health system.
Osabarima Kwaw Entse II, Chief of Mpohor, who chaired the event, suggested to MWAG to set up clubs in schools to encourage girls to take up careers in science and medicine.