Dr. Kissi Dompreh-Ofori, a Senior Medical Officer and Clinical Care Lead at GPHA has hinted that the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority is exploring various means to intensify its measures against the spread of COVID-19 in the port community.
Speaking on Eye on Port on the Effects of the Rising Cases of COVID-19, the Senior Medical Officer said GPHA in collaboration with the Port Health Unit of the Ghana Health Service has decided to resume its extensive sensitization of the port public so as to increase compliance to the protocols.
Dr. Dompreh also revealed that, due to the overwhelming rate of infection, the Port Authority has decided to dedicate its Clinic B in the Port enclave as a COVID-19 treatment center for mild and moderate cases.
“As we speak, all our treatment centres are full to capacity, and sometimes we get cases that we have a high index of suspicion but centres are full. So we are forced to keep, manage and test,” he added.
The Medical Doctor said the GPHA Clinic is also exploring the concept of an appointment system so as to reduce the potential incidence of unnecessary contraction of the coronavirus infection by visitors, as it hits astronomical numbers nationwide.
Dr. Dompreh attributed the increased numbers of the infection in the first month of the New Year to what he termed as “pandemic fatigue”, as well as the observation of the political and festive season.
He revealed that truly, as speculated, there has been a detection of a new variant of the coronavirus in the country.
“A patient has been seen and tested positive, and is currently under quarantine. From all the studies, it seems to mean that, the new variant is in-country now.”
He said this newer variant is 70% more transmissible and appears to be more violent than the initial one that dominated the public space the entirety of 2020.
Dr. Dompreh-Ofori also remarked that it is important to acknowledge the ferocity of the virus as it is delivering more severe consequences on patients than formerly expected in 2020.
“Unfortunately we tend to see that there are a lot more deaths now. And before we were seeing deaths among elderly people with comorbidities. Now we are seeing deaths among relatively younger people with no comorbidities,” he disclosed.
He asked the public nonetheless not to panic, but just intensify their adherence to the COVID-19 prevention protocols.