Dr Ebenezer Appiah-Denkyira, Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), has called on public sector health practitioners and their counterparts in the private sector to see themselves as partners and not competitors.

He said it is important that both practitioners see themselves as offering complementary services to the society.

Dr Appiah-Denkyira said this during an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) at the weekend in Sunyani.

The Director-General said the GHS would like to partner the Society of Private Medical and Dental Practitioners (SPMDP) to provide a holistic health service delivery.

He said the GHS would do that by allocating Community Health Nurses (CHNs) to every electoral area in the country, explaining that the Service now has 11,000 of them.

Dr Appiah-Denkyira said the CHNs would be visiting houses to look out for children, pregnant women, the elderly and all sick people, especially those discharged from hospitals.

He said the CHNs would then link those requiring health care services to available health facilities from the Community Health Planning Services (CHPS) compounds to the highest regional health facility depending on the nature of individual health cases.

?That is the concept of family medicine?, he said, adding that the CHNs could also provide training to the lower level staff at the CHPS compounds and the health centres in terms of disease management, health education and promotion.

The Director-General said the relationship between the public sector health facilities and the private medical and dental practitioners would be deepened by granting them admission privileges for them to run specialised clinics in the public health facilities.

Dr Appiah-Denkyira said the GHS would also ensure that in the health governance system, the private sector would be included in the District as well as Regional Health Management Teams (D/RHMTs) and noted that their inclusion offered opportunity for joint planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation.

The Director-General said ?there are hospitals and polyclinics where we don?t have doctors, so the private sector can organise themselves to provide services in such places?.

This implies pulling together all our efforts in helping the clients since the essence is to shift focus from health professionals to the people, he added.

Source: GNA

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