29.03.2020 Opinion

Impact Of Panic Movements Across The Country On Mass Spread Of COVID-19

...Following Announcement Of Partial Lockdown
By Abulais Yaro
Impact Of Panic Movements Across The Country On Mass Spread Of COVID-19
LISTEN MAR 29, 2020

Since the announcement of the partial lockdown by the president, several people have left and continue to leave the areas earmarked for the partial lockdown to unaffected areas.

1. Are these people made to undergo screening before entering the areas not affected by the partial lockdown?

2. Do the MMDAs in the areas they are fleeing to take their data and possible locations for purposes of close monitoring?

3. Should there be a mandatory quarantine for these people at their new locations?

4. How well resourced are our MMDAs to support mandatory quarantine of the people entering their jurisdiction?

5. What role is the police service playing in managing these issues at the District level?

What I think
1. The various M/DHDs across the country should immediately be well resourced to intensify their surveillance activities. In their current state, and considering the fact that GOG funding has been almost zero in the last couple of years, they may not have the resources to undertake any effective surveillance on their own.

2. The NHIA must as a matter of urgency make some payments to Service Providers across the country. The effect of this panic movements across the country is that the virus may spread on mass scale across the country. Facilities need to acquire consumables for management of any suspected cases prior to confirmation n relocation to d designated isolation centres. The staff of these facilities need to be protected while at work. Suppliers of consumables to these Service Providers have suddenly increased prices of medical consumables astronomically. On top of that, suppliers are demanding for cash before consumables will be delivered to the hospitals. Where is the money? It is locked up with NHIA.

3. Test kits should immediately be made available to all M/DHDs to commence mass testing of people nationwide before we get to any severe to critical stages of this pandemic due to this panic movements across the country.

4. Most Hospitals are relying on their MMDAs for support to augment their efforts in combatting this pandemic. Some of the MMDAs support with their meagre resources, and complain of DACF not being released so they cannot do much. We are getting to a point where at the District Health Service delivery level a lot of support will be needed from the MMDAs. Please and please, we need to release some funding to them to support the health systems delivery at the district level.

5. Corporate Ghana should strongly support the Corona Virus battle. Some have started and that is commendable. The rest who are yet to come onboard should do so. Logistics are urgently needed.

6. Comparative Health Systems has made us aware that our healthcare system is relatively efficient compared to that of our neighbouring countries. Our neighbours are likely to move into Ghana using the numerous unapproved routes scattered all over the country, knowing that the approved borders have been closed to human entry. And they easily integrate with us at communities along these unapproved entry routes. As we concentrate on the approved borders, let us strengthen our monitoring of the communities along the unapproved entry points as well.

We are in this together

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