KATH Emergency Unit risks closure over spike in Covid infection among Doctors

The Accident and Emergency Unit of the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) in Kumasi risk closure for following increasing cases of Covid-19 infection among medical staff of the facility.

The Medical Director of the Hospital, Professor Baffour Kofi Poku in an interview with Ultimate FM’s Isaac Justice Bediako disclosed that virtually all doctors within the unit have contracted the disease.

He noted that the development has started affecting health care delivery in the referral facility.

“The policy is that once a staff tests positive, a doctor, a nurse etcetera, that person should stay away for two weeks. If you come to the Emergency now, virtually all the doctors have tested positive and they are not coming to work. So the reality is that it’s affecting seriously the rendering of services in the hospital. If we don’t take care and more than half of the staff of the hospital gets affected and are going to stay away for two weeks then it means we have to close down the hospital which we don’t want so the public should help us by observing the COVID-19 protocols of wearing the mask at all times.”

Meanwhile, at least 329 new coronavirus cases have been confirmed by the Ghana Health Service (GHS) pushing the country’s active cases to 2,428.

The death toll hits 1,269 after four additional fatalities were recorded across the country, an update on the GHS COVID-19 dashboard reveals.

As at 18 December, 2021, Ghana’s total confirmed cases stand at 134,555. Currently, health officials have recorded 129,921 recoveries.

So far, 24 persons are in severe condition with no critical case, according to GHS. Cases detected at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) are 3,857 with 3,282 recoveries.

Breakdown of regional cases

Greater Accra Region – 72,687

Ashanti Region – 20,887

Western Region – 7,551

Eastern Region – 6,617

Volta Region – 5,425

Central Region – 4,862

Bono East Region – 2,558

Bono Region – 2,126

Northern Region – 1,767

Upper East Region – 1,495

Ahafo Region – 1,060

Western North Region – 1,006

Oti Region – 848

Upper West Region – 743

North East Region – 283

Savannah Region – 262

Land borders remain closed
The President Nana Akufo-Addo has said Ghana’s land borders remain closed to human traffic until “further notice” as part of plans to control the spread of the COVID-19 disease.

The borders have remained closed since March 2020 when Ghana first recorded coronavirus.

Addressing the nation on Wednesday (15 December) in his update number 27 on measures taken against the spread of the virus, Akufo-Addo said: “As you know, the decision to close our borders, which are a source of livelihoods for many, was necessary because we wanted to limit the importation of the virus into the country.”

He added: “We are monitoring the level of threat of the disease and ongoing vaccinations in our neighbouring countries, and, as soon as we are satisfied that it is safe to do so, the borders will be open. Until then, I believe this is not the right time to reopen our land borders, especially as we are determined to prevent a fourth wave, and, as such, they will remain closed until further notice.”

Akufo-Addo said his government has beefed up its response capability and capacity to deal with the virus should “we encounter an upsurge in infections.”

“Over time, we have expanded our healthcare infrastructure, including oxygen supply and reach, particularly with respect to testing and treatment centres, and the training of health professionals across the country, in the care of severe and critically ill persons. However, our best bet in the fight remains adhering to the enhanced hygiene, social distancing and mask wearing protocols, and getting vaccinated.

“Let us choose to live and act responsibly throughout the Christmas festivities, and remember that our actions or inactions will either help to end the pandemic at a much faster rate, or continue to spread the virus in the country. I, on my part, will do everything possible to protect lives and livelihoods, and help return our nation to normalcy,” Akufo-Addo said.

Reviewed COVID protocols
Meanwhile, all persons who are 18 years and above arriving in the country are required to provide evidence of full vaccination for COVID-19.

The directive forms part of a review of the national COVID-19 preventive protocol instituted at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) to limit the importation of COVID-19 in the wake of the emergence of the Omicron variant.


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