The Ministry of Health has sent a warning signal to the Christian Health Association of Ghana (CHAG) schools to refund to students, all monies being charged as an extra fee for logistic support with immediate effect.
According to the Minister of Health Mr. Alex Segbefia, the ministry have had several complains of these Christian Health Association Schools extorting GHC500 from these vulnerable students which is not acceptable by the ministry and if care is not taken it will cripple the very reason for establishing these schools.
The arbitrary charging of fees in the institutions 2016/2017 academic year is a matter of gross concern. This practice has escalated to the extent that some schools are adding extra items as additional levies for the academic year, e.g. Cement, electronic system fees, stationary amongst others.
Mr. Segbefia however disclosed that, the ministry is unhappy about this practice because the exorbitant nature of such fees is defeating the purpose of getting those genuinely interested in providing health care into the institutions as against those who can afford it.
This will ultimately result in the production of professionals whose dedication to duty will be in question and the Ministry of Health will not tolerate any institution under its mandate disregarding lay down policies and procedures. He stated
He therefore petition some Heads of colleges such as Mampong Nursing and Midwifery College, Cape Coast Nursing Midwifery Training College and School Dispensary optics, Oyoko to step aside for further investigations into the scandal whiles all other Nursing Training Institutions are being monitored and further actions may be taken regarding other schools.
Mampong Nursing and Midwifery Training College has consistently being in the media as to whether it is a Ministry of Health facility or not and I want to state clearly that the school is a fully fledge Ministry of Health institution and this has been checked with the CEO of CHAG and other stakeholders. He emphasized.
He said, the authorities of the schools should abide by all laid down rules and regulation of the Ministry and the board stands dissolved because it has served its 4-year mandated term and a new board will be reconstituted in due course.
Mr. Segbefia reiterated the ministry’s position regarding school fees, Heads and school managements, stating that, Only the approved fees from the Ministry of Health as agreed on with Conference Of Heads Health Training Institutions (COHHETI) should be charged.
For the avoidance of doubt, he said approved fees for the 2016/2017 academic year is GHC 1400 without the above mentioned items and only schools that opted for the Cafeteria Services can charge additional GHC 600 for feeding as agreed by COHHETI.
The minister therefore emphasized that, Fees for additional items such as feeding fees, books, accommodation, uniforms, sports kits and others should be considered as optional and should not be made compulsory for student, but Where there is the need to charge for additional fees as indicated above, approval should be sought from the Health Training Institutions Secretariat of the Ministry of Health before students are levied.
It is the hope of the Ministry that all institutions would adhere to the directives above to ensure coherence and uniformity in the fees charged by Health Training Institutions. He added