Ghana’s infrastructure must improve rapidly in order to take full advantage of the economic opportunities provided by the recent discoveries of gas and oil. Existing roads can be greatly improved and new ones built, along with better sewers, fresh water supply pipes and electrical grids in order to allow the newly found raw fuels to be transported quickly throughout the country, either to be rendered by Ghanaians, or exported.
While the new economic stability afforded by the discovery of these fuels needs to fund the necessary infrastructure to export them, it must also be used to greatly improve the healthcare system in Ghana, for the benefit of all. Tremendous opportunities lie in Ghana’s healthcare sector for German companies with engineering expertise, as the country needs to build more hospitals and clinics alongside its rapidly improving infrastructure.
|“If we look at the health of every nation, it is determined by access to healthcare. Our target is to ensure everybody has access to good healthcare.”
Chireh Joseph Yieleh, Former Minister for Health,
Ghana's response to HIV/AIDS has also taken a positive turn: its prevalence rate is now 1.7%, the lowest rate so far in West Africa, according to statistics from the Ghana Demographic and Health Survey (GDHS). The prevalence rate has been dropping from 3.1% in 2004 to 2.7% in 2005 to the current level, largely as a result of sustained educational campaigns and subsequent behavioural modifications among the adult population.
However, healthcare infrastructure improvements have mainly taken place in Ghana’s urban areas, meaning more hospitals and clinics are still needed for the country’s rural population. When asked if private investors could help improve Ghana’s healthcare sector, Mr Yieleh said “...we need to build more hospitals, health centres clinics. These are not provided by the government alone; we have private investors along with the local people, pharmacies and doctors who are opening their own private clinics together… We now have the burden of lifestyle diseases along with the infectious and communicable diseases that we have still not managed to combat. We need to resources to face this. We can do more, and we are all committed to it.”