Ghana has confirmed its first case of the new Indian variant of COVID-19, government officials announced on Tuesday.
Dr Anthony Nsiah Asare, the presidential advisor on health told Accra-based Asaase Radio that the patient has since been isolated for treatment.
He explained on the programme that the case was detected from a passenger arriving in the country through the Kotoka International Airport (KIA).
“Yes, this is someone arriving at the Kotoka International Airport who tested positive. So you know once you have this variant all over, by all means, the world is a very small village, they move everywhere and if you are not very careful and open your eyes at the airport, you will have some of them slipping through to the communities,” he was quoted by Asaaseradio.com as saying.
Dr Nsiah Asare added, “The most important thing is that once we isolate the person and manage, that is the best way to go. As you can remember, we are one of the countries who do spot check at the airport and that is something that we should cherish.”
He said the government will continue to strengthen surveillance at the airport to avert the influx of such variants.
“What we do is that anybody who comes to our airport from September is tested of an antidote test and if you are found positive, we isolate you, and now the protocol is that on the third day we pick another sample to check if their positive or not…..to avoid the importation of any variant into the country,” he said.
The former Director General of the Ghana Health Service, however, said the detection of the Indian variant will not lead to a revision of travel guideline issued by the Ghana Health Service following the recent upsurge in cases recorded at the Kotoka International Airport.
“We still go by the advisory because the most important is to make sure that people don’t go to where they are not supposed to go to… “
Dr Nsiah Asare advised Ghanaians to continue to observe the COVID-19 protocols to help avert a third wave in the country.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has classified this coronavirus variant, first found in India last year, as a “variant of global concern”.
SOURCE: DAILY MAIL GH with files from asaaseradio.com