The Ghana Psychology Council has been urged to ensure that people who are not licensed to practice as paraprofessionals be vetted and given license.
Kwaku Agyeman Manu, the Minister of Health, said this to the council in a speech read on his behalf, at the maiden induction ceremony for licensed professionals, paraprofessionals and lay practitioners in Accra on Tuesday.
The induction was held under the theme: “Professionalism-Integrity and Service”.
Mr. Agyeman Manu said the license should be given when practitioners meet the qualification criteria as stipulated in the law.
“The law, however recognizes that, training and competence define who practices psychology as therapists, counselors, paraprofessionals and lay practitioners, and it is important that you practice within your areas of expertise and within the boundaries of your qualifications,” he said.
Mr. Agyeman Manu urged Ghana Psychology Council to inject discipline and best practices in the field of psychology.
“We recognize the delicate issues of power differentials between psychologists and their clients, and urge the council to be firm in ensuring the absence of abuse of such power among practitioners.
“It is expected that the Council will expedite the completion of its Legislative Instrument, and table it before parliament by mid-2018,” he said.
Acknowledging the critical role of practitioners under Act 857 in promoting and maintaining emotional and mental well-being in the country, Mr. Agyeman Manu urged the council to strictly enforce Act 857 to protect the vulnerable.
The Health Minister urged the practitioners and professionals, to live up to the challenge of being the best psychology professionals and lay practitioners.
He also urged them to continually acquire the requisite knowledge and skills needed for practice.
“Above all, you must develop the right attitude of heart, which will add value and meaning to the care you will provide for your clients,” he said.