• Public Health in Colonial and Post-Colonial Ghana: Lesson-Drawing for the Twenty-First Century

    Samuel Adu-Gyamfi (see profile)
    Anthropology, Cultural Studies, Digital Humanists, Public Humanities, Science and Technology Studies (STS)
    Public health, History, Environmental conditions, Social history, Medical policy
    Item Type:
    history of public health, Environmental history, Health policy
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    Public health in twenty-first century Ghana is mired with several issues ranging from the inadequacy of public health facilities, improper settlement planning, insanitary conditions, and the inadequacy of laws and their implementation. This situation compared to the colonial era is a direct contradiction. Development in the pre-colonial era to the colonial era sought to make the prevention of diseases a priority in the colonial administration. This was begun with the establishment of the health branch in 1909 as a response to the bubonic plague that was fast spreading in the colony. From here public health policies and strategies were enacted to help the diseases prevention cause. Various public health boards, the medical research institute or the laboratory branch, the waste management department, the use of preventive medicine and maintenance of good settlement planning and sanitation were public health measures in the colonial era. This research seeks to analyse the public health system in the colonial era so as to draw basic lessons for twenty-first century Ghana. Archival data and other secondary sources are reviewed and analysed to help draw these lessons. Richard Rose’s lessondrawing approach was used to draw the lessons.
    In the history of medicine, the ancient Romans were known to have played a major role when it comes to public health. They were of the view that “a healthy body ensures a healthy mind”. People were advised by their rulers to build their homes in healthy areas away from swamps, drains and marshes to prevent diseases such as malaria.
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    Journal article    
    Last Updated:
    4 years ago
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