The Ghana Health Service (GHS) says it will engage various stakeholders to come up with modalities to ensure all persons who arrive in the country are tested for COVID-19 ahead of the possible opening of air borders next month September.
President Akufo-Addo in a televised address on Sunday hinted that the country is preparing to reopen its airports to human traffic.
According to the president, he has thus instructed the Ministry of Aviation, the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority and the Ghana Airports Co Limited to work with the Ministry of Health and its agencies, to ascertain the country's readiness to reopen the airport.
Speaking to Citi News, Director General of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Patrick Kumah Aboagye said the service together with its allied agencies will make sure every traveller is tested before being allowed entry.
“Our work is to bring the capacity that allows us to test everybody on arrival. That is what we are working towards. We are looking at the systems and structures to enable us to do that, bearing in mind the number of passengers we expect. We are working with the airport authorities and other agencies like the FDA and Nugochi to ensure that capacity is built for us. But, it is doable.”
“The current protocol is that, anybody who comes in will have to come in with negative PCR not more than 72 hours from the time of arrival. When you get there, we will do another test just to validate. And if you are positive, for which the result will be ready in a very short time, the person will go through our normal routine of how we manage our positives,” he explained.
Ghana's air, sea and land borders were closed on Sunday, March 22, 2020, as part of efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
The closure left thousands of Ghanaians who have consistently appealed for help over the last few months stranded abroad.
The President reminded Ghanaians that “special dispensation will continue to be given for their evacuation back to Ghana.”
But the government's pre-condition for evacuation was that the stranded citizens bear the full cost of their ticket 14-day mandatory quarantine when they arrive in the country because of the threat of the novel coronavirus.
In some instances, the government has subsidised the cost of travel and quarantine.