More CHPS compounds needed to reduce mortality in rural Ghana

Health administrators in the country are appealing for more Community-Based Health Planning and Services (CHPS) compound in rural communities.

This, according to district directors of health, would enhance efforts by the health services sector to achieve universal health coverage.

Many rural dwellers travel long distances either on foot or by bus to access basic health care, a situation officials say impedes progress.

Healthcare managers indicate many people have died or developed complications under such circumstances.

The CHPS concept under Ghana’s health service delivery structure is supposed to be the first point of call for patients, especially, in rural areas.

Statistics show 2,580 CHPS compounds are presently functional across the country, though about 6,500 are needed.

Dr. Osei Kuffuor Afreh, the National Chairman of District Directors Of Health Services Group, believes many deaths in rural communities in Ghana could have been avoided if such health outfits were readily available.

He is imploring the district assemblies to assist in providing more CHPS compounds to improve access to health care for rural folks.

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The CHPS Initiative, started about 10 years ago, employs strategies tested in the successful Navrongo experiment.

It is expected to guide national health reforms that mobilize volunteerism, resources and cultural institutions for supporting community-based primary health care.

Meanwhile, Health Minister, Alex Segbefia in June this year revealed the success of the exercise in pilot areas has led to reduction in child mortality to 38 percent and total fertility has reduced by one birth.

At a forum in the Ministry of Health (MOH), he said government wants to build 1,600 CHPS compounds in the country between 2014 and 2017.