The upsurge in coronavirus cases and political party campaigns: Any correlation?

NPP Or NDC Cannot Win The Election In The First Round NPP and NDC rallies. File photo

Fri, 13 Nov 2020 Source: Nana Antwi Boasiako Barimah

I have always been a loud proponent for safety etiquettes which posses the substantial propensity to block or interrupt the horizontal transmission of the novel Coronavirus ever since it struck humanity as evidenced by my previous write-ups.

It's been my heartfelt dream that our epidemiological curve continuously navigates in a downward trajectory until we hit ground zero, in fact Ghana chalked huge successes in that direction until the curve started to navigate upward recently.

It is an indisputable fact that our political parties are grappling with prosecuting safe campaigns in a COVID-19 environment.

Ghanaians have been witnessing mammoth rallies being organized by political parties across the political divide where there is always gross disregard to COVID-19 safety protocols.

The layman on the streets will begin to wonder how come prior to the commencement of political party campaigns our case count was drastically low but the moment these campaigns gathered momentum our daily incidence rate has started surging.

As a public health professional, I approbate and subscribe to such ideals since it is biologically plausible.

Numerous scientific studies have indisputably shown that the novel Coronavirus favourably thrives in environments where social distancing is not respected, where nose masks are disregarded and where overcrowding and merry-making takes a center stage of our lives especially in a monstrous pandemic such as this. Sadly, this is the exact characteristic of political party rallies and health walks in recent times.

Annoyingly, these political parties sometimes claim to embark on health walks, and such health walks only provide fertile grounds for the further horizontal transmission of the novel Coronavirus since safety protocols are always thrown to the dogs.

These are reprehensible acts which ought to be condemned in no uncertain terms.

Two of the Bradford Hill criteria for establishing causality *temporality and biological gradient* further consolidate my assertion that political party rallies and it's attendant health walks are severely contributing to the upsurge in COVID-19 cases in recent times.

Temporality highlights the fact that exposure to a disease agent must precede disease outcome. And it is very obvious some or most of the cases we are currently recording get exposed in such political ecosystems.

Biological gradient (dose-response relationship) on the other hands lays strict emphasis on the fact that increased exposure yields a corresponding increase in disease incidence, and our current epidemiological curve solidly supports this fact.

Hence, as political party rallies and the political health walks continue, we must except a consistent upsurge in our COVID-19 case counts.

Going forward, political parties must revert to virtual campaigns and the traditional house to house and door to door strategies in order to keep all of us safe. As this is the only antidote to remedy the epidemiological quagmire that is staring our faces from afar.

Long Live Mother Ghana

God Bless Our Homeland Ghana

Columnist: Nana Antwi Boasiako Barimah