Parliament has been informed that it is true that the Botswana Health Professionals Act and the Nurses and Midwifes Act are being reviewed to repeal and re-enact a new act that will establish a new council for all health professionals.
Answering a question in Parliament on December 8, the Assistant Minister of Health, Dr Alfred Madigela, said the existence of two separate councils regulating health professions had resulted in variation of healthcare and professional standards, ethics and disciplinary procedures.
Dr Madigele noted that this had greatly affected the quality of professionalism and safety of health services, adding that it was therefore necessary to merge the two and come up with a body that will effectively protect the interest of the public.
He told Parliament that the proposed merging was effectively discussed with the two councils and key stakeholders and does tally with international best practices.
Above all, the minister said it was anticipated that the merger would deliver the desired results which include; the creation of strong cohesive teams of skillful and disciplined healthcare providers, establishment of a homogeneous entity intended to improve synergy between and among health professionals, reduction in apparent duplication of resources and strengthen disciplinary control to deal with increasingly complex medico legal issues and ensure patient safety.
MP for Shashe West Mr Fidelis Molao had asked the minister if it was true that the Botswana Health Professions Councils and the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Botswana would be merged.
He said if so, he should state the rationale for this undertaking; whether the proposed merging was effectively discussed with the concerned bodies and their members and whether it tallied with international best practices and if not when will the members be engaged.
The MP also wanted to know whether the merging will deliver the desired results to the health profession in general.
Source : BOPA