Neurological disorders contribute significantly to global mortality and morbidity.
They are responsible for about 9 million deaths a year.
While it is estimated that, globally, around 50 million people suffer from epilepsy alone.
Of this number, 80% live in low- and middle-income countries where only 1 in 4 have access to treatment.
To address the challenges and gaps in the care of people with epilepsy and other neurological disorders, the 75th World Health Assembly (WHA) adopted in May 2022 the Intersectoral Global Action Plan on Epilepsy and Other Neurological Disorders (IGAP), which aims to improve access to care and treatment for people living with neurological disorders while preventing new cases and promoting brain health and development throughout the life course.
As a result, WHO and other partners have been engaging stakeholders to share ideas on the effective implementation of the intersectoral global action plan on epilepsy and neurological disorders in Ghana.
“There is a need for collaboration between relevant stakeholders: everyone in health care at all levels, social care, civil and advocacy organizations, researchers and academic institutions in an attempt to improve services for epilepsy and other neurological diseases in Ghana,” the WHO said.
Representative in Ghana, Dr. Francis Kasolo at the stakeholder meeting on epilepsy and other neurological disorders in Ghana.
For Ghana, the intersectoral global action plan on epilepsy and other neurological disorders will build on the achievements of the “Fight Epilepsy” initiative implemented in Ghana between 2012 and 2016, which provided treatment and care to more than 2,700 people living with epilepsy and who were previously undiagnosed.
“We have seen what we can achieve if we work together.
Therefore, the Ministry of Health will continue to work with the WHO and other partners to aggressively pursue interventions that improve the lives of people with epilepsy and other neurological disorders,” says Dr (Mrs) Joycelyn Azeez, Director of Pharmacy, Ministry of Health.
The country is also benefiting from other WHO-led interventions, such as the Mental Health Gap Action Program (mhGAP), which aims to train non-specialized health workers to diagnose and manage mental, neurological and cardiovascular conditions.