A native of Ghana, Prince Kwakye Afriyie is head surgeon at a renowned hospital in the West African country. But his journey there took him via Germany; he underwent his specialist training for general surgery in Munich. After completing this training in 2013, he decided to return to Ghana, but not to Accra or Kumasi, the nation’s two largest cities, where 90 per cent of doctors work. Instead, Dr Afriyie opted for a hospital in the rural region of Ashanti, thereby playing a major part in helping to ensure comprehensive health care coverage in his home country.
A surgeon serving his country
Within the space of 18 months, the surgeon expanded the hospital’s capacity to enable it to take patient referrals from ten regional hospitals, health centres and doctors if required. This means that more people in the region can receive treatment. To this end, Dr Afriyie has recruited and trained more surgeons. The team has already carried out over 6,000 operations.
Dr Afriyie was supported with his return to Ghana by the Centre for International Migration and Development (CIM), a joint operation of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the German Federal Employment Agency. By attending events in Germany and Ghana, he had the opportunity to engage in dialogue with previous returnees. The surgeon’s decision to return was also made easier by a three-year salary subsidy, funding for equipment for an operating room, and the financing of a pharmacy centre.