COVID -19 reaches Wa

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The spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has gone beyond the identified epicentres, with Wa, the Upper West Regional capital, recording its first confirmed case.

This has shot the number of confirmed cases from 132 to 137, with cases from the routine surveillance rising to 59.

The number of fatalities has also increased to four

Until the new case was confirmed in Wa yesterday, all the cases recorded had been from Accra, Tema and Kumasi, which had been described as the identified epicentres by the Committee on COVID-19.

Not all gloom

Meanwhile, it is not all doom and gloom yet, as two people have also recovered from the infection and been discharged from the treatment centre.

Yesterday, the Ghana Health Service (GHS) indicated on its website that the number of contacts traced for follow ups and testing had increased from 970 to 1,006, and that out of that figure, 204 had completed the 14-daymandatory follow up.

It said majority of the confirmed cases were Ghanaians who returned home from other affected countries, with seven being nationals of other countries, namely, Norway, Lebanon, China, The Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

Case in Wa

The Wa confirmed case is a 42-year-old man who is said to have arrived in the country recently from Europe.

Briefing the media, the Upper West Regional Minister, Dr Hafiz Bin Salih, said the victim returned to the country through Egypt after visits to the United Kingdom and Spain.

He returned to Ghana eight days ago and travelled from Accra to Wa via public transport.

“Having reported of symptoms to health officials after self-isolating, his sample was sent to Kumasi and it was found to be positive. This is the first suspected case in the Upper West Region,” he indicated.

Tracing

Dr Salih urged the public not to panic but adhere to the precautionary measures, as advised by medical experts.

“This should not bring fear to us. I entreat all and sundry to adhere to the precautionary measures that have been prescribed for all of us. We need to continue to wash our hands regularly and, where necessary, we should apply hand sanitisers,” he said.

He intimated that efforts were being made to trace all the people the patient contacted, from Accra to Wa, for further action to be taken, and gave an assurance that everything would be done to prevent the disease from spreading, since it was an imported one.

While asking the public not to panic, Dr Salih also urged all those who came into contact with the victim to come forward to be tested for their own safety.

More tests

Meanwhile, all travellers who arrived in the country from March 3 to the time the mandatory quarantine directive came into force are to be tested, as government steps up efforts to control the spread of the CONVID-19 in the country.

Initially, the directive was for those who arrived from March 15, but President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has directed that the exercise be extended to those who arrived from March 3.

The Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, who confirmed this, said the directive was as a result of the number of imported cases recorded from the routine surveillance cases.

“The Ghana Immigration Service, working with the Ministry of Communications and its agencies, has a whole database of all those who came in,” he said.

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