President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has launched a revised edition of Ghana’s National Health Policy with the aim to ensure a healthy life for all Ghanaians without discrimination, at a ceremony in Accra.
President Akufo-Addo noted that the country’s existing healthcare architecture was not designed to provide a comprehensive service that could address health issues such as COVID-19, hence the need for the revised health policy.
The President explained that Ghana’s existing health policy takes care of primary health as well as infant and maternal health; but with the onset of COVID-19, government has revised the policy to give universal coverage and also ensure healthy lifestyle among the populace.
Speaking at the launch of the revised policy, President Akufo-Addo said “the need for a revised health policy is to to cover key determinants of health and not just primary healthcare.”
President Akufo-Addo also explained that all persons living in Ghana will have access to quality universal healthcare with the new policy.
The policy framework derives inspiration from the Directive Principles of State Policy which among others requires the State to ensure the realisation of the right to good healthcare for its people irrespective of colour, race, geographical location, religion, and political affiliation.
The main objective of the policy is to strengthen the healthcare delivery system, encourage the adoption of healthy lifestyles, improve the physical environment and the socio-economic status of the population and to ensure sustainable financing for health.
President Akufo-Addo called for synergies within and across all public sector ministries as well as with other stakeholders, towards achieving the national health goal.
He said lessons drawn from the COVID-19 pandemic had shown that health crisis could bring all other sectors of national life to a grinding halt.
He said the revised health policy is timely, particularly when the world is battling with the ravages of the coronavirus pandemic.
The adoption of this revised health policy, the President indicated, is consistent with and aligned to the realisation of the 17 UN SDGs and Agenda 2030 which seek to build a world that is just, equitable and all-embracing.
The Minister of Health, Kwaku Ayemang Manu, said the revised policy will address economic, social and developmental determinants of health.
The last National Health Policy was developed in 2007 and it has guided the delivery of health services in Ghana until the current revision.
The new policy was developed with the help of UNICEF and other development agencies.