The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is hammering countries around the world as infection rates are rising, effectively putting pressure on health facilities and managers. Ghana is also having its fair share of rising cases of infections as the country recorded nearly 1000 confirmed cases over a period of 24 hours.
Males make the highest number of patients – 57 per cent of those infected are male, while 43 per cent are female.
Monday night July 6, 2020, the Ghana Health Service reported 992 positive cases over a 24-hour period to bring the total number of infections in Ghana to 21,077. The number of deaths from the disease has risen to 129 with 16,070 recoveries. The country has 4,878 active cases. The recorded cases are from 3,298 tests done within the period.
The result represents 30.07 per cent positive cases – which means for every 10 Ghanaians tested, three were infected with the virus. This figure is therefore, the highest overall positive test percentage since the pandemic was first announced in Ghana on March 12, 2020.
In the routine surveillance cohort of 1,002 people who reported sick at the country’s hospitals and fitted the case definition of COVID-19, 394 tested positive (a positive test percentage of 39.32). This implies that of every 10 people who visit hospitals in the country with symptoms of COVID-19, four potentially expose health care professionals to the virus. This number is on a steep rise having stayed at two in 10 over the previous days of the reporting period. These numbers show that community spread of the virus is spiraling out of control.
While Ghana’s average positive test percentage to date has been 6.72 per cent, it has been rising by approximately 3.7 per cent daily for the past five days, due to these factors.
The Ashanti Region, for instance has started leading in the number of deaths in the country from the disease with the Case Mortality Rate (CMR) in that region at 1.34 per cent compared to the national CMR of 0.61 pe cent – and what that means is that a person infected with COVID-19 in that region is twice more likely to die.
Meanwhile, the Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman Manu says the government is fatigued as it works to tackle the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the country, according to news reports.
The Minister who warned that many of the positive cases could soon turn into critical conditions if care is not taken, said both the President and health officials leading the efforts to fight the virus are already tired and added that Ghanaians must take personal responsibility to protect themselves from getting infected by the virus.
“If we don’t do that, the virus will continue to spread. Our positive cases continue to increase, if we are not careful the positive cases will turn into critical illness. Nana Addo is tired. Those of us leading the fight are fatigued because we have done all that we could to defeat the virus but people are not adhering to the preventive protocols. So I am begging everyone to adhere to hand washing, social distancing and wearing of masks directives to help save the country some money and reduce the stress in fighting this disease,” he said.
The impact of the rising number of infections on available health facilities and the number of health care workers that have been infected have compelled the Korle-bu Teaching Hospital in Accra to suspend all non-emergency surgical cases.
By Kwesi Tettey