Work towards opening two more training centres – Orthopaedic Association urged

Orthopaedic Association
Orthopaedic Association

Members of the Orthopaedic Association of Ghana have been called upon to work towards opening two more training centres outside Accra and Kumasi to increase the number of orthopaedic and trauma surgeons in the country.

Professor Richard M.K. Adanu, Rector of the Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons who gave the advice, said there were less than 100 orthopaedic and trauma surgeons in Ghana and that the number could not provide care to the increasing victims of accidents.

He made the call at the second annual general and scientific meeting of the association in Accra on Friday.

It was on the theme: “Challenges of Orthopaedic and Trauma Care in Ghana: The Way Forward.”

Prof Adanu said: “As a country, we are far short of the one doctor per 1000 population that has been recommended by the World Health Organisation and when we come to the specialties in the country, the number of specialists in each category per population is still less than the need.

“So, the creation of Faculty of Orthopedic and Trauma Surgery gives the chance to increase the output of graduates in this field.

“And there is a very high level of interest in training as orthopedic and trauma surgeons.”

He asked the association and its executive members on the Faculty of Orthopedic and Trauma Surgery at the Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons to take up the challenge and start opening orthopaedic and trauma surgery training centres at the regional hospitals of the country.

Prof Adanu stated that it was important that the association decentralised the training for the specialists to be found where their services were needed.

“The Ghana Health Service and the Government as a whole who sponsor post-graduate training in the country should look at the outputs, and if we continue to turnout graduates who end up being concentrated in two or three facilities in the country, then the governmental conclusion, which is right, would be that it is probably not worth putting money into training because those who come out of the training are not at the places where we want their services to be delivered.”

Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, the Director General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) in a statement read on his behalf said statistics showed that four people died daily on Ghana’s roads due to road accident and its associated trauma-related injuries.

“Estimates show that Ghana loses over 230 million dollars yearly due to road accidents with more than 1,600 deaths. The loss correlates to 1.7 per cent of the country’s gross domestic products.

Dr Kuma-Aboagye said as part of efforts to address the situation, the Ministry of Health (MoH) in collaboration with the National Ambulance Service, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons has trained and mentored Emergency Medical Technician and Paramedic Emergency Nurses and Emergency Medicine Specialist for effective pre-and in-hospital care.

“The GHS/MoH has been empowered to build completely new hospitals with well-designed accident and emergency/trauma centres. These projects when completed will augment the management of emergencies in the service,” the GHS Director General said.

Dr Joseph Korpisah, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Surgery, School of Medicine, UHAS and the chairperson for the occasion appealed for equipment and coordination for the effective handling of orthopaedic and trauma cases.

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