Protect Ghana’s Covid-19 strides – GHS advises increased adherence to protocols

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Director-General of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) has urged Ghanaians to remain cognisant of the existence of the novel coronavirus.

Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye believes the reduced number of daily infections may detract from the general bid to completely eradicate the disease.

As of April 15, 2021, the country’s active Covid-19 cases is 1,334 with 89,604 recoveries.

Unfortunately, 771 persons have died sue to the virus since the first two cases were recorded back in March 2020.

Some 783,560 persons have also been vaccinated in Ghana awaiting the administration of a second jab.

Speaking at the launch of the Partnership to Accelerate Covid-19 Testing (PACT) in Africa, Dr Kuma-Aboagye was of the view that despite the deceleration in infection rates, Ghanaians must not let their guard down as far as the adherence to the safety protocols are concerned.

“I entreat all stakeholders to use their platforms to intensify information and education in the general public at the community level on the need to obey the laid down protocols and the need to get vaccinated to win this fight,” the GES boss explained.

He however commended the PACT project, describing it as a noble cause that will augment government’s effort against the pandemic.

“I see this project as a noble cause to complement government’s appreciation to partners and stakeholders like MPA in the fight against this global pandemic,” he said on Wednesday.

The project initiated by the Millennium Promise Alliance was geared towards Strengthening Community Engagement in the response to Covid-19.

Executive Director of the Millennium Promise Alliance, Chief Nat Ebo Nsarko says the project will among other things, reduce the virus’ spread and link testing to treatment while promoting SDG 17.

In his welcome address at the event, Mr Nsarko highlighted the need to champion behavioral change, deconstruct myths, facilitate vaccine utilisation and document evidence of strides made in the country’s fight against the canker.

“Partnerships are essential not only in stable times but in uncharted times such as these. That is the reason this project is uniquely designed by key partners and centred on communities.”

He revealed that six districts have been selected for the Ashanti and Greater Accra regions for the implementation of the PACT project.

They districts are; Amansie South, Oforikrom Municipal, Sekyere Central District, Accra Metropolitan Assembly, La Madina Nkwantanang and Ashaiman assembly.

Some 30 participants from the selected districts are currently being trained to “facilitate the development of Covid-19 action plans in their respective districts.”

Partners in the project include MPA-Ghana, NAP+Ghana, Youth Health Advocates Ghana (implementing organisations), the Ghana Health Service, UNAIDS, Network of Persons Living with HIV/AIDS and the National Aids Control Programme.

The project seeks to compliment government’s works in reducing community spread of Covid-19 and minimize its effect on the attainment of the National HIV and AIDS targets.

On the back of this, Country Director for UNAIDS, Angela Trenton-Mbonde shared her thoughts at the event.

According to her, ending Covid-19 requires all hands on deck and societal approach from government to civil society organisations, development partners among others.

She explained that “training of facilitators who will help community-based groups, including groups of persons living with HIV to integrate COVID-19 response activities in their work plans.”

“The project will generate evidence for advocacy from community actors, including persons living with HIV, women’s groups and other vulnerable populations to identify and inform health authorities of any disruption of essential health services, particularly HIV related services at the community level and mobilize for greater uptake of these services,” he added.

Meanwhile, a memorandum of understanding to kick start the implementation of the action plan.