Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons key in preventing brain drain in Ghana

The college has aided in preventing the brain drain of specialists in the medical profession in Ghana

The Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons has been acknowledged as a key institution that has aided in preventing the brain drain of specialists in the medical profession in Ghana.

The college, established in 2003 by an act of parliament, has been a leading college for training specialists in medicine, surgery and related disciplines in the country.

Dr Nkrumah Mills, the former president of the college, made this known at a press soiree to announce the college’s upcoming 20th anniversary activities.

The anniversary is on the theme: “Two decades of medical postgraduate training in Ghana.” Activities for the celebration begin in April and end in December.

Mills stated since there was no specialist school for medical professionals in Ghana, they were compelled to travel overseas for training after their postgraduate studies in the country.

He said, “The trend changed considerably when the college was established in 2003, to provide specialist education for health professionals in the country.

“So, if you look at the figures, the number of people who were leaving the country was high but as soon as the Ghana College of Physicians and Surgeons was established, the numbers went down considerably so, that is the situation.”

Mills noted that the trend could have resulted in brain drain, which could have negatively impacted the health sector significantly by widening the doctor-patient ratio in the country.

Professor Paul Nyame, the chairman of the Ghana Medical and Dental Council and former rector of the college, indicated that the college has considerably contributed to the training of medical specialists in Ghana.

He stated that since its establishment it has produced 1,690 members and 200 fellows in 16 facilities across the divisions of physicians and surgeons.

He said, “The college has also contributed to policy discussions within the health sector by presenting policy recommendations on how to improve the sector to the Ministry of Health.”

Professor Richard M.K. Adanu, the rector of the College said although the institution has achieved successes, it is currently facing some challenges.

He mentioned some of the challenges as logistical constraints and the lack of materials to undertake the necessary training of medical professionals. He said the mismatch between the number of specialists trained vis-à-vis the ever-increasing population is of grave concern to the college.

Dr Justina Ansah, the chairperson of the anniversary planning committee, noted that in celebrating the milestone, several activities have been outlined including sensitization of fellows, members and residents of the College of Physicians and Surgeons, and a press soiree.

She stated that in May, there will be an official launch of the 20th anniversary and a public lecture.
She said, “In June, there would be media rounds, a health walk and medical screening in July in Accra and Kumasi, a second public lecture and fundraising dinner in August.

“In October, there will be a museum exhibition in some secondary schools, a donation to the Leprosarium, a third public lecture in November, and in December an annual general scientific meeting will be held, poster presentations/exhibition and a Thanksgiving service.”

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