CHPS

A two-day National Technical Forum on Community Based-Health Planning and Services (CHPS) to dialogue on health issues and accelerate the implementation of CHPS is underway at Sogakope.

CHPS CentreThe forum, organized by the Ministry of Health, has brought together stakeholders in the health sector to redefine the CHPS policy and strategy within the new decentralization framework.

The forum is on the theme ?Public-Private dialogue for a new policy direction for community health service.?

The workshop is expected to discuss best strategies and technologies for delivering primary health care services and how to provide leadership, motivate and make service delivery of CHPS attractive to the young professionals and volunteers providing community health services.

Dr Kwaku Agyemang-Mensah, the Minister of Health, said community health workers had brought care to many communities in very difficult and hard to reach places.

Dr Agyemang-Mensah said there was no clarity in policy and the implementation framework for CHPS was poorly developed in that there were several written manuals, plans and strategies that were contradictory with agencies of the Ministry.

He said the village health worker concept and the Bamako Initiative which were based on the principle of volunteerism, community health service delivery and finding a framework of financing sustainability have all had success.

The Minister said services delivered close to clients through community participation and leadership was a sustainable framework and that there was the need for innovative approaches to scale up in the training and management of human resources and building facilities.

Dr Agyemang-Mensah said his outfit would by the end of 2015 roll out at least two new CHPS programmes per district under the leadership of District Chief Executives.

Dr Afisah Zakariah, Director of Policy Planning and Monitoring Evaluation at the Ministry of Health, said the CHPS was a national initiative which started in Navrongo as a Community Health and Family Planning Project, based on advancements in Bangladesh.

Dr Zakariah said the project was launched in1994 as a three-village pilot study where nurses were relocated to communities to provide doorstep services.

She said healthcare services under the CHPS included preventive, promotive and treatment of minor illnesses such as malaria, acute respiratory infections, diarrheal disease and other childhood illness, provide family planning services and immunization outreach.

Dr Zakariah said a review conducted on the CHPS programme showed that there was poor understanding of CHPS policy at all levels and the poor quality of the available healthcare in some areas.

GNA

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