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Global health expert proposes expanded Covid-19 testing strategy

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Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Department of Health Policy and Management at New York University’s Global Public Health is proposing the expansion of Ghana’s Covid-19 testing strategy.

Nana Kofi Quakyi says this will enable the country determine if more people have contracted the virus than thought.

Speaking on JoyNews’ news analysis programme, Newsfile, Mr Quakyi who is also a PhD candidate at the University said the current testing regime while good, appears limited.

“Our testing strategy cannot be limited to just contact tracing and hospitals, we actually have to do an active wide scale epidemiological study on what is going on in the country.

“Doing an additional type if testing which is community level screening where we are doing a survey to figure out what the sense of spread is,” he said.

Ghana’s Covid-19 cases have risen sharply, from 3,091 to 4,012 in just 24 hours.

The 921 increase in cases comes just days after the Ghana Health Service announced that the country had reached the peak of the Covid-19 curve was expecting a decline in new cases subsequently.

Further explaining the new cases, however, the GHS said 533 of the new cases were recorded at an industrial facility after 1,300 employees there were tested.

Commenting on this development, Mr Quakyi said it is a good thing that infected have been identified and steps are being taken to isolate and treat them.

“The thing that is quite clear is, these workers don’t live in the factory. They live in their communities, they have households, family members and so it speaks to how aggressive and effective are we going to be at contact tracing.

“[Over] 500 is quite a big number and we need to make sure that we are able to aggressively go out and identify all those contacts, trace and test them,” he added.

Mr Quakyi believes the cases at the industrial facility speaks to the risk that actually exists in communities, that is why the testing regime has to be expanded to capture these cases.



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