The COVID-19 National Trust Fund has raised GH¢62.33 million as of August 2022.
A total of GH¢57.2 million out of the amount has been disbursed to support various projects, programmes, activities and for administrative purposes.
Dr William Collins Asare, the Administrator of the Trust Fund, made this known at the opening of the 1st Oku Ampofo Memorial conference on medicinal plants research organised by the Center for Plant Medicine Research in Accra.
The three-day conference is on the theme: “Medicinal Plant Research: Innovation and Prospects in a Pandemic Era”, and seeks to give the Center the opportunity to showcase preliminary results from on-going research project on the development of herbal products against COVID-19 with support from the COVID-19 National Trust Fund.
The Administrator said since the inception of the Fund in April 2020, a cumulative amount of GH¢22 million had been spent on various interventions.
The GH¢22 million, he said, was used for the purchase and distribution of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
These are nose masks, thermometer guns, face shields, cover ups, overalls, Veronica buckets, disposal bed sheets, and disposable gloves.
The rest are hand/surface sanitisers, liquid soaps, tissue paper and other medical items, which have been distributed to about 150 hospitals, medical facilities, care management centers, COVID-19 Isolation Centres, small health centers, CHPS Compounds, and Schools in all the 16 regions.
Dr Asare said the Trust Fund had also supported various institutions such as the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, the Veterinary Directorate of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture Laboratory, and the Ghana Health Service, with the cumulative amount of GH¢7,555,082.00 to contribute to their COVID-19 testing activities.
“The COVID-19 National Trust Fund has also disbursed a cumulative amount of GH¢8,316,000.55 to support the construction of projects at various medical facilities, including the support for the construction of the National Infectious Diseases Centre at the Ga East Municipality in Accra, which was commissioned in July 2020.
“The support for the rehabilitation and equipping of a COVID-19 Isolation Centre at the Pantang Hospital, which was commissioned in September 2021, the support for the rehabilitation and equipping of the Cape Coast Teaching Hospital COVID-19 Treatment Centre, which is currently on-going.
“This includes the support for the laying of a pipeline to connect the Greater Accra Regional Hospital’s Oxygen Plant to the COVID-19 Intensive Care Unit at the hospital, which was commissioned in July 2021,” he stated.
Dr Asare said the COVID-19 National Trust Fund partnered various public and private organisations, including the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), and the National Commission on Culture (NCC).
The Fund also supported the National Road Safety Authority (NRSA), InGenius Africa (a private content development/production house), Ebeye Yie Foundation, and many more, to create awareness and educate the public on Corona virus and how to combat the pandemic.
He said the Trust Fund had spent a cumulative amount of about GH¢4,852,554.00 to promote effective information dissemination on the need for the continuous adherence to the prevention and safety protocols of the pandemic and for all eligible Ghanaians to get vaccinated against the virus.
The Administrator noted that a cumulative amount of GH¢4,995,375.92 had so far been provided by the Fund to research and innovation institutions in the quest to promote research and innovation on various aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
They are the Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research in Tropical Medicine (KCCR), Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR), and the Centre for Plant Medicine Research (CPMR) Mampong Akuapem.
Dr Asare stated that about 7,927 identified needy and vulnerable persons across the country affected by the COVID-19 pandemic were supported with GHC500.00 each, all constituting a total of GH¢3,964,500.00.
He said food items, including bags of rice, pasta, Indomie, tinned foods, and different types of drinks were distributed to children’s Homes, Orphanages, Children Hospitals, Aged Groups under the umbrella of HELPAGE Ghana.
Other needy persons were also given those items, especially during the lockdown period in Greater Accra, Kasoa, Greater Kumasi and its environs.
The Administrator appealed to the public and corporate bodies to continue to make contributions in cash and in kind to the Trust Fund because numerous requests for support kept coming.