The Ministry of Health is to provide about 1,600 Community Health Planning Services (CHPS) zones this year to improve maternal and child healthcare delivery nationwide.
Dr Afisah Zachariah, Director of Research and Evaluation at the Ministry, disclosed this at a Media workshop in Accra on Tuesday.
She said the ministry was looking at a range of strategies to holistically reduce maternal deaths and meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) target.
The workshop was organized by the Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ), with support from Star Ghana, to expose media persons to the 2014 government of Ghana budget.
As part of the workshop, six Ministries, including Trade and Industry, Energy, Roads and Highways, Agriculture, Gender, Children and Social Protection, Health and Finance and Economic Planning, presented their budgets and projections for 2014.
Dr Zachariah, who spoke on behalf of the Minister of Health, Ms Sherry Ayitey, said by the close of this year the Ministry would provide five polyclinics in some regions and upgrade many health facilities into hospitals.
She said that was part of expansion moves to enhance accessibility of healthcare services and also to make available necessary logistics to those health centres.
According to Dr Zachariah, inadequate human resources and health facilities, negative attitudes of health personnel and low access to health facilities were some of the major factors contributing to maternal deaths “and the ministry is poised to address them.”
She said since most of the maternal deaths occurred in the rural areas, community health nurses were now being trained in basic midwifery to be able to provide emergency services to improve maternal health.
Dr Zachariah hinted that to increase the ratio of a midwife to a client, the ministry was considering the training of males as midwives too.