Local News

President of Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association Reveals Alarming Rate of Brain Drain Among Healthcare Professionals

Close to 6,000 Nurses and Midwives Have Left Ghana Since August 2023, Citing Poor Remuneration as a Key Factor.

Perpetual Ofori-Ampofo, the President of the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association (GRNMA), has revealed that close to 6,000 nurses and midwives have left the country for greener pastures since August 2023. These healthcare professionals have sought better opportunities elsewhere, citing poor remuneration as one of the reasons for their departure. The situation highlights the pressing need for improved service conditions to ensure that healthcare workers can perform their duties effectively, regardless of their location.

Mrs. Ofori-Ampofo emphasized that addressing the brain drain in the health sector requires more comprehensive solutions than simply providing drones for medical supplies. Sending student trainees to rural areas has exposed the challenges faced by those providing services or residing in such regions. Despite the passage of time, these difficulties persist. She argued that the health sector should focus on infrastructural development, ensuring that facilities are well-equipped with necessary amenities. Rather than relying solely on drones, medications and supplies should be readily available within the facilities themselves. Mrs. Ofori-Ampofo questioned the need for drone delivery when proper storage systems could maintain the required conditions for medications and blood products.

In her view, a coordinated effort across sectors is essential for the well-being of Ghanaians. This includes not only healthcare infrastructure but also transportation networks, housing, and utilities. Creating an environment conducive to health professionals and their families is crucial. When health facilities are built with the needs of professionals in mind, they can better serve the community and contribute to improved healthcare delivery.

The recent increase in the nurses’ license verification fee by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) sparked agitation among health professionals. Some nurses believed this move was an attempt to curb the large number of departures from the country. However, following a meeting with stakeholders, the NMC has been directed to hold off on implementing the new fees.

The brain drain phenomenon poses significant challenges to healthcare delivery in Ghana, and urgent interventions are necessary to address this critical issue.