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Fix Broken Systems For Proper Healthcare

The Vice Chancellor of the University of Health and Allied Science (UHAS), Prof. John Gyapong has attributed the failure of health interventions in West African countries to weak and broken country systems.

According to him, these broken systems stem from the inability to implement policies and manage resources in order for people to receive proper healthcare delivery.

Prof Gyapong made his observation known at the Consortium for Mothers, Children, Adolescents and Health Policy and System Strengthening (CoMCAHPSS) Partners Meeting held in Accra on Wednesday.

In explaining this, he said, “If we are promoting a mass drug administration to deworm children and to treat people affected with worm diseases and the environment in which these people are living needs fixing…if you don’t provide a latrine, they will go back and get re-infected.”

He therefore called for the complete overhauling of inefficient systems and the adjustment of health system framework.

“We really need to fix the system but there is a dilemma whether to fix the system before bringing in the interventions…but I think it should be a two-form approach,” he noted.

Prof Gyapong advised that “…while we are fixing the system we should not lose sight of the fact that there are certain proven interventions that are known to impact on our health indicators.”

Embrace Research

In helping to fix broken health systems, Prof. Irene Akua Agyepong, Ghana Health Service (GHS) physician and senior lecturer at the University of Ghana’s School of Public Health, has stressed on the need for health professionals to venture into more research.

She says the availability of a well research health system will help policy makers to make informed decisions that will be beneficial to the health sector.


The symposium brought together partners from ECOWAS countries and Cameroun to do an intensive assessment of their achievements and to outline programmes for the next 18 months.

The meeting also sought to finalise plans including dates and module facilitators for the West Africa Summer School on Health Policy and System (HPS) and Maternal, New-born Child and Adolescent Health (MNCAH).

CoMCAHPSS and West Africa Health Organisation (WAHO) Summer School

The session begins in 2018 in Burkina Faso and would train individuals in the health sector and researchers on HPS and MNCAH.

According to Selina Defor, Project Coordinator for CoMCAHPSS, “there are modules on media and advocacy to build capacity for media practitioners to advocate actions that would strengthen health systems.”

It would be a joint summer school and would run tentatively for two weeks in French and English.

However, country partners are allowed to run the modules in their individual institutions.

CoMCAHPSS has over the years received funding from International Development Research Centre (IDRC).

Source: Grace Ablewor Sogbey/ [email protected] 

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