The Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyemang-Manu, has said the ministry is working towards a bilateral agreement with the United Kingdom (UK) to send and train nurses.
He said the ministry would use the opportunity to regulate and identify prospects in the agreement that would benefit Ghanaian nurses.
Mr Agyemang-Manu stated this at the inauguration of the governing council of the Ghana College of Nurses and Midwives.
The council is chaired by George Abankwah-Yeboah, the President’s nominee with the task of steering the affairs of the college and upholding the college’s mandate.
The board members include, the President’s nominee, Timothy Kwegyir Aggrey; the Rector of the college, Hannah Akua-Oparebea Acquah; Vice President of the college (Nursing), Dr Gloria Achempim-Ansong; Vice President of the college (Midwifery) Susuana Van-Brocke; a representative from the MoH, Dr Baffour Awuah, and the Dean of the Pharmacy Training School, Dr Nancy Innocentia Enyan.
The rest are a representative from the council, Philomena Nyarko Wooley; a representative from the Attorney-General’s Department, Patience Adumua-Lartey; a resident representative, Andrew Holyfield Tettey; representatives from the Nurses and Midwives Association of Ghana, Perpetual Ofori-Ampofo, and Netta Forson Ackon, as well as a representative from the college.
Intenship to UK
Mr Agyemang-Manu explained that the nurses exported to the UK would start off as interns at various hospitals in the country, gain skills and return.
He said the nurses would be paid as employees saying, “that is what we are going to do and the state will benefit”.
“That is how we have negotiated.
We have not completed the exercise yet because we are having large numbers.
People are requesting we open more schools.
We say no because the UK government wouldn't know where they would work,” he added.
The council chair, Mr Abankwa-Yeboah, said one of the aims of the college was to train nurses that could take over in the absence of doctors.
The Rector of the college, Mrs Acquah, said the task ahead of the board was big because in the past, nurses in the country were general nurses and midwives and did not specialise but since the world was moving forward Ghana needed to improve.
"At least we can have nurses that take care of children, nurses who are specialised in taking care of cancer patients, and emergencies.
So it is a big task we have taken upon ourselves to do", she added.