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Sixty years down the line: why are medical laboratories in Ghana not regulated?

Just some few days ago, the nation of Ghana celebrated its 60th independence anniversary amidst several celebrations and deliberations to harness our energies to move the nation forward to its right place of prosperity and advancement.

My focus here is to bring to light one of the major hindrances to see this desire actualized in our health sector.

The medical laboratory is a key area in today’s medical field for accurate and cost-effective diagnosis, treatment and management of most disease conditions. This is why in most advanced countries, where the interest of the populace is prioritized far above individual selfish motives; there are regulating bodies for the medical laboratories to ensure quality primary healthcare delivery.

In our part of the world, Ghana, coming to this fulfillment has been a bizarre one with group of well trained and oath-sworn health professionals hindering the process. As a country our mission to seek advancement and better healthcare delivery caused leaders and experts to deliberate to regulate the laboratories in Ghana. Unfortunately after those years of committee meetings, payment of allowances from tax-payers money and funds from international organizations, the documents are abandoned with unsatisfactory excuses.  I am sure you’re wondering why these attitude and pretense are exhibited in this nation.

Firstly, my realisation has been that individuals and groups who are impeding the process believe such a noble cause will not financially benefit them. They believe will even cause them income.  The quark labs themselves and cronies have set up, employed SHS graduates who have no idea about why they do what they do and put people life in jeopardy, will be run down

Now, do you think such a group or individuals will promote the passing of a law in this nation to regulate the medical labs available?

A regulatory body, when given the mandate and authority by the law of this nation, will ensure that qualified and well trained medical laboratory scientists are the ones manning our clinical laboratories in both the public and private arena, and would be held responsible for any misconduct and negligence leading to misdiagnosis, wrong prescription and loss of a human person’s functioning body part or life.

The regulating body would accredit and deem fit medical laboratories that can operate in this nation, and close down all substandard laboratories that fail to meet its standard in order to promote quality healthcare delivery to the dear people of Ghana.

Sometimes, I found it interesting and regrettable when the leaders of this nation don’t speed up laws that intend to promote quality in our health sector, especially when it has nothing to do with medical doctors. Maybe, it is ignorance and not lack of intuitive understanding concerning the issue at hand. Ignorance, according to, implies that a person or group needs to be educated on a particular subject. You might have heard the phrase “ignorance is bliss,” which means that sometimes it’s easier when you don’t know the whole truth about something and can be blissfully happy, unaware of unpleasant realities.

Further, I blame some of my colleague medical laboratory scientists who don’t boldly voice out when issues concerning regulation of medical laboratories come up, so that they can educate the public about their role in the health sector and how they can contribute to quality healthcare.

Let me pause here but expect more intruding introspections.

God Has Blessed Our Homeland, Ghana. Let’s manifest those blessings.

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The Editorial takes care of op-ed articles from visiting writers or special release by the writers and editors of MedCircles.

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