The Directorate of Human Resources for Health in the Ministry of Health and Sanitation has started a two-day Consolidation of Inputs from Technical Committees for the Development of the Human Resources for Health (HRH) Policy and Strategic Plan 2017-2021 at the Family Kingdom, Aberdeen in Freetown.
Speaking on the theme: “Building a Resilient Health Workforce”, the Deputy Chief Medical Officer II, Dr. Amara Jambai said Government has invested significantly in the health workforce before and since the beginning of the Free Health Care Initiative.
He reiterated that the health workforce has more than doubled in size since 2010, which is a demonstration of the commitment of the government to provide quality health care to all Sierra Leoneans.
Dr. Amara Jambai disclosed that the Health Ministry presently has a workforce of more than 10,000 nationwide, and more than 1,300 in duty stations including hospitals, peripheral health units and administrative offices, pointing out that despite having the largest workforce in the Civil Service and being the largest employer in the health system, there are still a number of gaps in the human resources across the different cadres and level of health facilities.
He emphasized that the office of the Chief Medical Officer is supporting the health sector component of the President’s Recovery Plan, which is designed to help save the lives of 5,000 children and 600 women over the course of the next 14 months.
The Deputy Chief Medical Officer said the three committees working on the strategy have been meeting since July with a view to improving the Human Resources for Health in Sierra Leone with a clear vision for the health workforce that all stakeholders both government and partners can support.
The Director of Policy, Planning and Information, Dr. Samuel Kargbo commended the progress made by the Human Resources for Health Directorate in the country, adding that developing a sound five-year Human Resources for Health Strategy will add to the efforts on reviving the overall health system in Sierra Leone.
He said the progress would attract the much broader efforts on Human System Strengthening in Sierra Leone, including the Community Health Worker engagement process, the Nursing and Midwifery Strategy process, and efforts to produce a new Primary Health Care handbook within the National Health Sector Strategic Plan.
Dr. Samuel Kargbo disclosed that the Directorate of Planning, Policy and Information is at the start of developing a new National Health Sector Strategic Plan that would encompass all the efforts completed during the Human Resources for Health strategy development process.
The Director for Human Resources for Health, Mr. Samuel Coker said the Ministry of Health and Sanitation recently completed a nation-wide head count of health workers and cleaning of the payroll.
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Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.