Social Issues

Ghana’s educational system comprises of three main levels namely; Basic, Secondary and Tertiary levels.
To ensure accessibility to basic education by all children, education at the basic level has been made free and compulsory by the government and mandated by article 39 of the constitution. Unlike the basic level, tuition for secondary education is fee-based.

Basic Education
Basic Education is now 12 years made up of 6 years of Primary School, 3 years of Junior High School (JHS) and 3 years of Senior High School (SHS). After JHS, students may choose to go into different streams at Senior High School (SHS), comprising General Education and Technical, Vocational and Agricultural and Training (TVET) or enter into an apprenticeship scheme with some support from the Government.
After the basic education, students sit for an entrance examination i.e. Basic Education Certificate Examination (B.E.C.E) to enter into senior high schools (or technical/vocational schools), which serves as the preparation grounds for tertiary education. At this level students pursue programs in the field of Science, Agriculture, Business, General Arts, Visual Art and Home Economics for a three year period.

Unlike the basic level tuition, higher education is fee-based. To ensure effective supervision of students by school authorities, schools at this level are predominantly boarding schools.

The healthcare system has five levels of providers: health posts which are first level primary care for rural areas, health centers and clinics, district hospitals, regional hospitals and tertiary hospitals. Hospitals and clinics run by Christian Health Association of Ghana also provide healthcare services. There are 200 hospitals in Ghana, some for-profit clinics exist, but they provide less than 2% of health care services. Health care is very variable through the country. Urban centres are well served, and contain most hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies in the country. However, rural areas often have no modern health care. Patients in these areas either rely on traditional African medicine, or travel great distances for health care. In 2005, Ghana spent 6.2% of GDP on health care, or US$30 per capita.

Health Insurance
To reduce the financial burden of household and to bridge the gap of accessibility between the rich and poor, a National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) was introduced to replace the hitherto cash-and-carry system. The scheme requires people in the informal sector to pay the equivalent of about $10 per annum, whiles 2.5% of the social security contributions of those in the formal sector go into the scheme. In addition 2.5% of all Value Added Tax (VAT) revenue is paid to the scheme.
At the end of November 2009, total subscribers to NHIS stood at 14,282,620 (approx. 69.73% of population) according to Operations Directorate of the National Health Insurance Authority. The sharp rise in number was attributed to increased mass education on the benefits of the scheme and regular payment of premium by government. To obtain medical care in any public medical facility, an individual needs to provide a membership card of the scheme.

Availability and Costs
In spite of the above medical infrastructure and personnel produced in the country, access to health service in geographical and financial terms continue to be a major hurdle for a large percentage of the population. Whereas most of the medical facilities are located at the urban centres and district capitals, many health workers also refuse appointment to the few that are located in the rural areas.
Another factor contributing to the low and imbalanced access to health care is the exodus of health workers to developed countries for greener pastures.
To ensure a good health care system, a number of measures and programs have been implemented to curb the brain drain such as the distribution of saloon cars to doctors working in deprived areas and enhanced salaries and pensions. Training of various categories of health workers continues to be a priority of the government and enrolment into almost all categories of such training institutions rose over threefold.

Source: IOM COUNTRY FACT SHEET Ghana (October 2014);jsessionid=FCA5962CB8D0504C39036CAEB50A3377.1_cid359?__blob=publicationFile

Recent developments in the Ghanaian economy has given birth to a boom in the construction sector, including the housing and public housing sector generating and injecting billions of dollars annually into the Ghanaian economy. The real estate market investment perspective and attraction comes from Ghana’s tropical location and robust political stability. An increasing number of the Ghanaian populace are investing in properties and the Ghana government is empowering the private sector in the real estate direction.