The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has called on the government, school managers, pupils, and students to promote adequate education and ensure strict adherence to all COVID-19 preventive protocols.
It said the adherence to all strategies for early detection, isolation, and treatment of any potential COVID-19 cases in schools, was very critical in preventing the spread of the disease among pupils, students, and staff.
The Association, which made the call in a statement it copied to the Ghana News Agency, said in the last couple of weeks, the COVID-19 case count in the country had sharply increased, a situation that called for concern by all well-meaning Ghanaians and Organisations.
The increasing case count could be directly attributed to the total disregard for and the lack of enforcement of all relevant COVID-19 preventive protocols throughout the country and the importation of cases from other countries via travellers arriving at the point of entry.
The COVID-19 situation in the country, the statement said was alarming and dire at this particular moment and the risk of the potential exponential rise in the number of cases could not be discounted.
The GMA, therefore, called for an urgent scale-up of COVID-19 testing and contact tracing for all positive cases as well as strict isolation and management of all infected persons to help break the chain of transmission.
Additionally, it said COVID-19 testing should be made free or relatively cheaper for the ordinary Ghanaian who needed testing as a result of direct exposure or when symptomatic for COVID-19.
The Association also asked the government to lead a free mass testing in all identified COVID-19 hot spots, saying, it would help to address the current shortfalls in the testing and contact tracing regimes.
The Ministry of Health, Ghana Health Service, and the National Commission for Civic Education should also re-launch and intensify education on all necessary COVID-19 protocols in collaboration with the GMA.
The statement also appealed that adequate Personal Protective Equipment be made available at all health facilities for use by health professionals to curb the COVID-19 infections amongst health care staff.
The GMA acknowledged the government’s efforts at securing COVID-19 vaccines for the country, however, it entreated that it did everything to fast track the process to enable the public to get the needed vaccination before the pandemic got out of the country.
The government should ensure that there was adequate public education on the COVID-19 vaccine before its arrival, approval, and administration in Ghana.
Regarding the numerous conspiracy theories surrounding vaccines in general, the GMA also urged the public to disregard it as it circulates on various media platforms.
“We entreat Ghanaians to take their personal safety into their hands by adhering strictly to all the COVID-19 safety protocols. Do your best to stay safe at all times. COVID-19 is real,” the statement said.