14 March 2018

Ghana: 200 Ghanaian Doctors Expected From Cuba Next Year

Mr Pedro Luis Gonzalez Despaign(middle) with Mr Dave Agbenu(second from right)Mr Martin Adu Owusu(second from left) and Mr Mathew Ayoo.Photo Micael Ayeh

More than 200 Ghanaians are currently studying medicine in Cuba and are due to become fully fledged doctors in about a year's time.

With Cuba globally acclaimed for its robust health system, their return home is expected to strengthen the country's health care system.

Mr Pedro Luis González Despaign, Cuban Ambassador to Ghana, disclosed these when he, accompanied by first Secretary of the embassy, Julio Sanchez, paid a visit to the New Times Corporation (NTC), yesterday.

They were received by Martin Adu-Owusu, Acting Managing Director, David Agbenu, Editor of the Ghanaian Times, NTC's flagship newspaper and Matthew Ayoo, the News Editor.

Aside medical training, Cuban doctors have been invited to work in Ghana's health sector several times.

Mr Despaign said currently, there were about 20 Cuban doctors in Ghana providing health care in Upper East, Northern, Volta, Eastern, and Greater Accra regions with most of them in the northern part of the country.

He said the figure was about 180 less of the number of Cuban doctors that used to serve in the country due to the government's request for that number adding, that, they would bring more if requested.

Commenting on Ghana's population hitting 29.6 million, he said his country's population was rather reducing with the current figure being about 11.2 million adding that it has been predicted to reduce further.

Reasons for the declining population, Mr Despaign said, included the involvement of women in the country's development process thereby reducing the number of children they had.

He said the country would consider a policy to encourage more birth to soar up their population and replace its workforce

On politics, he said following last Sunday's election of new National Assembly they were continuing the process of election of new president - the first in nearly 60 years from outside the Castro family.

Earlier, Mr Despaign praised Ghanaian Times for its insightful stories particularly 25 stories published about Cuba since 2016, stating that his visit was to strengthen the relationship between the newspaper and the embassy.

Mr Adu-Owusu, for his part thanked the ambassador for the recognition, stating that the doors of the corporation were always opened for any collaboration.

Mr Agbenu, welcoming the guests said Ghanaian Times would continue to inform and educate the public through responsible journalism and facilitate national development.

He said the commendation from the ambassador would spur the newspaper on to do more in that respect.

On the high population, he said there was the need for a policy to check the increase as it had dire consequences for the country.

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