The Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection and the Ministry of Health have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Aarhus Social Health Care College, Denmark to promote the welfare of the aged.
The MoU will help develop the capacity, structures, systems and processes to solve the health care need of the elderly in the country and facilitate cooperation between the parties in the field of eldercare, rehabilitation, training and welfare technology, and result based monitoring of quality and outcome.
Mr John Alexander Ackon, the Deputy Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection, said there were 810 million persons aged 60 years and above, representing 11.5 per cent of the world’s total population of seven billion.
MrAckon said Africa with the youngest population would have 10 per cent of its population aged 60 years and above by 2050 and that the population of the aged in the country totalled 1,643,381in 2010, representing 6.7 per cent of the total population.
He said the country adopted the National Ageing Policy in July 2010, with all the elements of the Madrid Plan of Action that qualified its sub-caption to be rendered as ‘Ageing in Security and Dignity’.
He stressed that the objective of the policy was to provide health care, support and social protection for older persons, including preventive and rehabilitative health care and harness scientific research, expertise and the potential of technology to address societal health issues in ageing.
MrAckon said the Ministry had initiated a LEAP cash transfer to needy and vulnerable households with the elderly, who were 65 years and above, and undertook free biometric registration of over 3,792 elderly persons onto the National Health Insurance Scheme to receive free health care.
Mr Neil Vestergaard, International Senior Manager, Aarhus Social and Health Care College, said the outfit did not consider the gesture as only a statement but more importantly about the health of the elderly.
MrVestergaard expressed the hope that the agreement would help transform the fortunes of the aged in society through international unity and cooperation, adding that, the ceremony would be the first in the series.
He pledged his support to work with a committee to ensure that the policy was put into action to address the needs of the aged in society.
Mr Seth Abloso, Head, Gender and Social Protection Department of the Trade Union Congress, noted that, the health needs of the aged was critical to the development of the country.
He advocated the implementation of basic income grants of Gh¢100 for persons not on pension scheme since there were 1.6 million people not on the scheme.
Present at the ceremony were representatives from the Help Age Ghana, Ministry of Health and the Akrowa Aged-Life Foundation, local partners representing the Denmark College.