Commissions of inquiry and the quest for a greater accountability in health care delivery in AfricaA Ghanaian perspective

Authored by: Ernest Owusu-Dapaa

The Routledge Handbook of African Law

Print publication date:  November  2021
Online publication date:  November  2021

Print ISBN: 9780815350682
eBook ISBN: 9781351142366
Adobe ISBN:


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The last three decades witnessed a dramatic metamorphosis of Ghana into a democratic state. On the political governance front, significant milestones have been attained, but the quest for accountability should not be confined to the political sphere. The healthcare delivery in Ghana, being an area that is bedeviled with exploitation of the vulnerability of patients by healthcare professionals who seem to defy accountability to their patients, is in urgent need for a public searchlight to be thrown there to expose the abuse of medical power going on and unearth factors that militate against patients’ empowerment. This chapter seeks to explore the prospects of using the constitutional mechanism of holding public inquiries for bringing abuses and scandals in the healthcare delivery into the light. This will engender public discourse on the conundrum of lack of accountability in this sphere of the Ghanaian society. Beyond exposing lack of accountability by healthcare professionals in a developing country like Ghana, the public inquiry could be a catalyst for the enactment of legislative measures or the development of policy norms to govern aspects of medical practice that are currently unregulated.

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