Hepatitis B cases on the increase at Daboya, West Gonja
Mr Akwasi Frimpong, an Assemblyman of Daboya Electoral Area in the West Gonja District of the Northern Region, has expressed concern about the increasing rate of hepatitis B cases in the area that has resulted in the death of many.
He said most of the infected persons were children.
Mr Frimpong said a screening exercise conducted in the area by some concerned youth saw 85 people infected out of 885 people screened, adding that if urgent steps were not taken to address the situation, more people would die from the disease.
Mr Frimpong raised these concerns in Tamale on Wednesday during the first quarter meeting of the Northern Region Child Protection Network, a coalition of various organizations and NGOs championing the protection of all forms of violence against children.
The network, which is spearheaded by the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), meets quarterly to deliberate on issues affecting children so as to help in addressing them.
The Assemblyman said the screening exercise was conducted in the area because of the many strange deaths, adding that Safe Your Liver Foundation, an NGO also carried out similar screening in February this year, where of the 145 people screened, 45 tested positive with hepatitis B.
He expressed worry that most of the people affected by the disease were poor people, who could not afford the high cost of treating the disease, and appealed to NGOs, the Ghana Health Service and the general public to assist people in the treatment.
Mr Alhassan Suleman Hussein, Chairman of the Network, blamed most of the infections on food vendors, who he noted did not clean their plates used in serving food properly making people prone to infections, adding that sanitation agencies and the media should sensitized the people on good personal hygiene.
Mr Hussein, who is also the Regional Director of NCCE, blamed systemic failure as the cause of most of the problems the country was going through and appealed to individuals to be proactive and to insist for the right thing to be done.
Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Mr Steven Tetteh in-charge of Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Ghana Police Service, who was also at the meeting, urged people to report any form violence and abuse of children to his outfit for the law to take its cause.