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2023 Budget: Give financial clearance to over 800 Pyhsician Assistants, other health staff

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The government is being urged to give financial clearance to the over 800 Physician Assistants currently unemployed. 

It would be recalled that in November last year, the Ghana Physician Assistants Association (GPAA) called on the government to give financial clearance for about 800 members who are at home to get employed within two months.

“No PA should be at home when health centres lack PAs,” the Association stated in a communique issued at the end of its 18th Annual General Conference held in the Central Region.

The Conference raised major concerns regarding, among others, career progression for Physician Assistants, absence of official appointments for those heading sub-districts and lack of allowances for PA interns in sharp contrast to what pertains to their colleagues in other sectors of the healthcare delivery value chain.

“Physician Assistant interns remain the only group of healthcare workers (trainees) who still receive National Service Allowance instead of Internship allowance,” the Association stated in its communique.

“Nurses and Doctors are rather paid for the services they offer during this period. Physician Assistant (Interns) who would become the bedrock of this noble profession has been frustrated since their formative days as they have been denied accommodation and internship/rotation allowances, as is done to other healthcare professionals.

“However, they are put on duty rosters and sometimes On Call Duty. They rent their own accommodations, take transport from far and near just to make sure they dutifully undergo that mentorship and service to Mother Ghana which will shape their future life and profession.What wrong has the Physician Assistant committed by deciding to choose this noble profession which has contributed significantly to the country’s primary healthcare system. This is injustice perpetrated at the highest level in a Country that prides itself in the Rule of Law, Justice and Equity. The young ones are even frustrated at their formative levels before they enter the mainstream of the profession. This development is very demotivating.”

When the National President-elect of the Ghana Physician Assistant Association (GPAA), Peter Ayamba, spoke on A1 Radio’s Day Break Upper East Show today, he said the number had grown from the initial 800; a situation the Ministry of Finance had to remedy immediately through the 2023 Budget Statement and Financial Policy. 

“Nothing has changed [since the last time we spoke]. More Physician Assistants have even been inducted. We are just hoping that the 800+ Physician Assistants and other health professionals that are sitting at home waiting for clearance would be cleared. That is the greatest thing that this budget can do for us,” he said. 

Source: A1radioonline.com|101.1MHz|Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith|Ghana

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