Dr George Sipa-Adjah Yankey, Minister of Health, on Monday urged doctors and all health workers to resort to negotiations rather than strike actions in pressing for their demands.
"The era of strike actions should be considered over," he said, at the opening of a two-day orientation programme for 76 newly qualified medical officers and dentists who are to begin a one-year houseman training at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital.
The Minister said in as much as it was their right to resort to strike actions, the need of the tax payer and the Hippocratic Oath sworn by medical personnel during their graduation to put their patients first should come into play when such decisions were being taken.
He called all health professionals to order saying the best way to resolve a problem was to sit with the appropriate authorities to dialogue.
Dr Yankey said his Ministry would be meeting with the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) on Monday to dialogue and expressed the hope that all issues regarding salaries and allowances of doctors would be resolved to prevent the recurrence of the same lapses in salaries each year.
The Minister called on all junior doctors at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital to end their strike and go back to work since arrangements had been completed and cheques issued to pay all arrears due them by the close of the day.
He further called for harmonisation within the health sector, saying most problems within the sector would have been best and quickly resolved if there was proper coordination and collaboration with the various units.
Dr Yankey said government was aware of the poor state of equipment and infrastructure in certain health institutions and had resolved to upgrade such facilities to make working much easier for health personnel.
"Government is taking steps to ensure that adequate provisions are made to ensure decent living for young doctors and other health personnel who are posted to deprived areas," he said.
He, however, stressed discipline on the part of all health professionals as the key to ensuring and sustaining quality healthcare.
Dr Ben Annan, Acting Chief Executive Officer and Medical Director of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, urged the young doctors and dentists to consider themselves privileged to work with very experienced medical professionals at the hospital.
"This will afford you the opportunity to gain more experience and expert support and advice on the field," he said.
He advised them to be patient and respectful to their seniors to learn from them.
Dr Annan gave the assurance that the hospital administration intended to recruit attendants who would support the junior doctors in their work so that they did not have to run errands on their own, but concentrate on treatment of patients.