Member of Parliament for Juaboso and ranking member of Parliament’s Health Committee, Kwabena Mintah Akandoh has set out on a one man campaign to push for the creation of more laboratories and isolation centres across the country to ensure rapid response to suspected cases of COVID-19.
He has described as unimpressive the existence of only two laboratories in the country for case testing given the fast-spreading nature of the virus.
In an interview with Accra based Citi FM, he called on the government to immediately upgrade some facilities across the country to handle the situation.
“At this point in time, the government must involve the private health service providers and also if Ghana has at least 16 isolation centres in the country, one in every region that’s not beyond Ghana. They will quickly tell you Ridge hospital, Korle-Bu and a few others in Accra. We need at least one in every region. I am also not impressed with the number of labs we have in the country pre-testing the cases. We have one in Kumasi and one in Noguchi Memorial Institute, I am not impressed. I am also reliably informed that the little effort we put into Navrongo, Tamale hospital or the Korle-Bu hospital will be able to have a laboratory that can test these cases. We don’t need to transfer cases all the way to Kumasi or Accra for testing,” he said.
Mr. Akandoh also argued that the State must absorb the full cost of testing of a suspected case to its treatment to encourage more voluntary testing.
“The cost could be a barrier for anybody to go to the hospital to test so if the government has devoted $100 million, it must be announced that anyone who shows that symptoms must go the hospital free of charge. That should have been the first announcement to serve as encouragement for people to go and test so please Mr President, this particular one is important so let the state bare the cost, “he said.