The patient, a 57-year old Ghanaian clergyman, who returned from the United Kingdom on March 17, had his sample taken to the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research on Sunday, April 5, which tested positive for COVID-19, and is being managed in a health facility in Cape Coast.
Mr Kwamena Duncan, the Central Regional Minister, who made the revelation at a media briefing in Cape Coast Wednesday afternoon, said there was no cause for alarm.
He said all the 22 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies had response teams in place working in coordination with the Ghana Health Service and other stakeholders to check the spread of the disease in the Region.
He commended the Regional Health Directorate and the Management of the Cape Coast Teaching Hospital for the swift manner it responded to an outbreak of meningitis, which hit the Region some weeks ago, resulting in two deaths.
Mr Duncan said but for the strategic measure put in place, the meningitis cases would have escalated and expressed optimism that similar strategies would be instituted to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
He appealed for the constant supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to protect health workers who were risking their lives to save lives.
Dr Akosua Owusu-Sarpong, the Central Regional Director of Health, said 13 contacts including family members and health workers had been traced with some going into self-isolation while others had been placed in isolation in a facility and their initial specimen taken for testing.
On the general regional situation, she said the Ghana Immigration and Ghana Health services have so far traced 500 contacts, out of which 140 specimens has been taken for testing, which tested negative.
Dr Owusu-Sarpong assured residents of the Regional and District Response Teams’ preparedness to manage all cases that may be confirmed, hence there was no need to panic.
She, however, urged the public to strictly follow the preventive protocols as health personnel worked to contain the disease.
The country, as at Wednesday, April 8, had recorded 313 confirmed cases in six regions.