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New variant of COVID-19 recorded in Ghana

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Ghana has recorded the new strain of the Coronavirus, the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has revealed.

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The variant was recorded among passengers who tested positive after arriving at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) recently.

While delivering his 22nd update on enhanced response measures taken by his government to battle the pandemic, Nana Akufo-Addo disclosed that “recent genomic sequencing undertaken by our scientists have established that some arriving passengers tested positive for [the] new variants of COVID-19.”

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These affected passengers have all been isolated.

“Furthermore, work is ongoing to determine the presence and extent of spread of the new variants in the general population,” the President added.

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As a means of managing the situation, the government is intensifying its strategy of enhanced tracing, testing and treating, to allow identify infected persons for isolation and treatment.

Some contact tracers are also being mobilized to follow up on contacts of all who test positive.

Both public and private laboratories are to supply, in real-time, data on all persons tested on the common platform established by the Ghana Health Service.

There will be sanctions against laboratories that fail to comply.

Reactivation of treatment, isolation facilities 

Detailed investigations of the cases indicate that, apart from arriving passengers at our airport who tested positive, infected persons have recent histories of attending parties, weddings, end of year office programmes, family get-togethers, and funerals.

Nana Addo said additional logistics, including vehicles to the Ghana Health Service, have been provided for the supervision and monitoring of asymptomatic cases being managed from home.

“Government is reactivating available treatment and isolation facilities across the country in anticipation of any further increase in infections. The provision of adequate medicines, equipment, and personal protective equipment to enable health workers to attend to home-based patients is being effected”, Nana Addo said.

Meanwhile, the Ghana Health Service is recording an average of  200 new cases of COVID-19 infections daily with the number of patients requiring hospitalization and intensive care is rising.

13 out of the 16 regions have recorded active cases with a nationwide case count pegged at 1,924 currently.

The number of confirmed deaths has increased, 338 persons to 352.


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