As both the number of Coronavirus cases and deaths rise around the world, Ghana has so far remained an outlier in terms of fatalities. As of Wednesday 11th March, 2020, officials in the country had recorded 57 suspected cases of the disease which have all proved negative. This was announced by the President, Nana Akufo-Addo when he addressed the nation on Wednesday, 11th March, 2020, on the country’s preparedness for a possible hit of the disease within the country’s borders.
“Our country’s two main research institutions, the Noguchi Memorial Institute and the Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research, which have the capacity to investigate and confirm or otherwise suspected cases of Coronavirus infections, have been very supportive in this regard. So far, they have found that the fifty-seven (57) suspected cases, as of Wednesday, 11th March, have proved negative,” he said.
All the countries that share their borders with Ghana have recorded cases of the disease with the latest being Côte d’Ivoire. On Wednesday, 11 March 2020, Côte d’Ivoire confirmed its first case of the fast-spreading disease. An official statement from the country’s Health Ministry indicated that the patient is a 45-year-old Ivorian man who had recently travelled to Italy.
Nigeria which recorded its first case on February 28, 2020 had also documented 2 cases so far with no deaths. Nearby Burkina Faso has also recorded 2 cases with zero deaths. Neighbouring Togo has recorded 1 case with no death, while Senegal has 4 cases with no death. Cameroon has encountered 2 cases and zero death. Democratic Republic of Congo has 1 case and South Africa South Africa, 13 cases with no deaths. Global statistics for affected persons have surpassed 120,000 with over 4,500 deaths, majority of which occurred in China.
Ghana well placed to minimise impact of Covid 19
“Government is analyzing the potential impact on our economy to the virus and will trigger the relevant response to minimize it. We have begun to engage the domestic pharmaceutical industry to assist in producing as much of the logistics to prevent and combat the virus as it is possible under the circumstances,” explained President Nana Akufo-Addo while addressing the nation on the country’s preparedness.
He also stated that the government is taking steps to handle any adverse impacts the global outbreak of the deadly coronavirus could have on the country’s economic fortunes. According to him, the state has engaged some relevant industry players to produce inputs needed to tackle the possible spread of the virus into Ghana. He has also directed the Minister for Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, to make available the cedi equivalent of $100 million to enhance Ghana’s Coronavirus preparedness and response plan.