Ghana can become primary medical tourism destination – Dr Armstead

By
Iddi Yire, GNA

Accra, Dec. 3, GNA –
Dr Rodney Armstead, President of LuccaHealth Medical Specialty Centre, has said
that Ghana can become a medical tourist destination for the entire West Africa
region.

He said there are
opportunities to improve healthcare, as such, LuccaHealth is here; to bring the
United States (US) medical quality, expertise and specialism to Ghana and to
work with Ghanaian institutions and doctors to provide excellent health
services.

Dr Armstead made
these remarks at the just ended Commonwealth Speaker Series on Africa
healthcare, organised by the Commonwealth Africa office, in partnership with
the of LuccaHealth Medical Specialty Centre.

On the theme,
“African Healthcare – problems, challenges and solutions”, the Speaker Series
brought together leaders in the world of medicine, health, media, law, business
and academics, to discuss problems and solutions to the pertinent issues in
healthcare.

The high point of
the Speakers Series was an engaging panel discussion which was moderated by Mr
John Apea, the Africa Coordinator for the Royal Commonwealth Society.

Dr Armstead, who is
a former President Bill Clinton’s appointee, highlighted the significant role
Ghana could play in the African Healthcare space, and also underscored the need
to have the right data to be able to tell its own story; tell from the
information available.

In a panel
discussion, Dr Anthony Adofo Ofosu, Deputy Director-General of the Ghana Health
Service (GHS), said GHS was implementing the Ghana Integrated Management
Information System, an opportunity to monitor stock levels of medical products
in order to enhance efficiency.

He said there is the
need to recognize that Ghana has come a long way in improving healthcare among
its citizenry, adding that “the problems of the past like whooping cough and
polio are no more, we must celebrate those achievements and recognize that we
are on the right track”.

These comments were
reiterated by other physicians on the panel such as Dr Caryn Agyeman Prempeh,
Founder of Cerviva and Lead Medical Resident Officer at Claron Medical Centre.

On his part, Dr
Winfred Baah, Consultant Physician in Internal Medicine and Nephrology at the
Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, spoke of the need to invest in Ghanaian healthcare
professionals, some of who are the most skilled in the world.

Mr Percy Asare
Ansah, Chief Executive Officer of Premier Health Insurance, who urged the
public to get an insurance cover, also highlighted the need to understand that
healthcare insurance was not as expensive as people perceive.

Dr Margaret Atuahene
from the School of Public Health, University of Ghana, also noted that in the
area of healthcare delivery, health insurance was a good thing, however,
stakeholders must deliberately develop pro-poor packages for the informal
sector.

She said in Africa,
the new challenge of non-communicable diseases, particularly, hypertension and
diabetes takes a lot out of its weak financing budget, so it is time to pay
attention to healthy lifestyles including physical activity and eating well.

“It also includes
our emotions, do we get angry quickly, these things all impact our health so if
we can work on them, it will save us a bit from hospital visits and certainly
government’s budget on health”, she said.

Other speakers at
the event included Mr Columbus Kwanchie Bruce, the President of the Ghana
Branch of the Royal Commonwealth Society.

GNA

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