Declare Kumaca Situation An Epidemic; Intensify Public Health Surveillance - NAHSAG Demands
The National Health Students’ Association of Ghana (NAHSAG)* is devastated by reports of three additional deaths of students at the Kumasi Academy (KUMACA) bringing the death toll to six since March this year.
It is incomprehensible the manner in which Ghana Education Service, Ghana Health Service and the Ministry of Health have slowly managed the situation since these mysterious deaths first occurred between 22nd and 31st March, 2017. The cause of these deaths should have been ascertained at the time they first happened to protect the lives of the remaining thousands of students, however, due to negligence, lack of concern and disregard for the lives of the poor students, authorities watched on for more lives to be lost with several others in critical conditions.
We are alarmed by the revelation of the Ashanti Regional Minister which suggested that the deaths could be Ebola related. This gives us a cause to worry bearing in mind the spate at which the Ebola Virus Disease spread across neighboring countries killing thousands of people. Though the Minister’s statement may not be accurate since no scientific or laboratory investigation has been conducted, we cannot sweep it under the carpet.
The case fatality is alarming and it is on this note that we demand the situation be declared as an EPIDEMIC and treated as a National Security issue. It would be worthwhile to initiate attempts to salvage millions of lives than to idly look on for the ‘unknown’ causative agent to claim more lives.
We wish to call on the Ghana Health Service and the Ministry of Health to immediately deploy professionals to the school to embark on an outbreak investigation to determine the situation we have at hand before it gets out of control.
Public Health Surveillance must be intensified across the country as we approach the Meningitis season which could also be the cause of these deaths.
*RICHARD OSEI-YEBOAH (PRESIDENT, 0203917600, 0243933028)*
*LYDIA ADDAI ACHEAMPOMAA (GENERAL SECRETARY,0501364298)*
*(Public and Media Relations Officer*