Coronavirus Cases to Upsurge due to Lifting of Lockdown- Health Expert Cautions
A health expert, Dr. John Amoasi has said that Ghanaians should prepare for an upsurge in coronavirus cases due to the lifting of restriction of movement in some parts of the country.
President Nana Akufo-Addo yesterday during his seventh state of the nation address announced the lift of the three-week partial lockdown on Greater Accra, Kasoa and Greater Kumasi with effect on Monday, April 20, 2020.
Speaking in an interview on Accra based radio station, Dr. Amoasi mentioned that the president’s decision will cause a spike in the COVID-19 cases.
“What I want to tell the people of our dear nation is that they should prepare for more cases of the coronavirus, not necessarily to prepare for more death but there will be more cases based on the decision taken by the president”.
Dr. Amoasi who is also a lecturer at KNUST College of Health Science said the president’s decision is not based on science because the country does not have the kind of data needed to be able to measure an infection rate.
“We should prepare for more cases of coronavirus, I am not saying that we should prepare for more deaths and destruction, I am not saying that it is going to collapse our economy. It has the potential to do it.”
“But if the argument is that we are following the numbers and we are good to go and infections wouldn’t go up I will strongly contest that. “He said.
He argued that based on data and a clear knowledge of the epidemiology of the disease, the decision was not taken from a public health perspective and that it could be other factors that he is oblivious of.
“It is definitely not public health decision that I can tell you, whether it is an economic decision or not I cannot tell and in fairness, I am not privy to all the variables that informed the decision making. What I am not happy about is the argument that the decision is based on public health... this I don’t agree with”
However, Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah in an interview earlier today said “If you look at our infection rate as has been gathered after 3 weeks of data, the composite infection rate is about 1.5% but the epidemiologists we are working with breaks it a bit further. That 1.5% if you break it down, you will notice that those from mandatory quarantine are about 5.6%. Those from general surveillance, about 2.7%, but those in the enhanced tracing which comes close to what your real representation is, is about 1.09%, and that is your early infection rate.”
Opinion from a Security Analyst
Security Analyst and Executive Director, Jatikay Centre for Human Security and Peace Building has also cautioned that the decision by the president to lift the partial lockdown of Accra and Kumasi is a risk which could backfire.
“…the pointless decision to lift the lockdown in Accra, Kumasi and their environs betrays the President’s own words so far as combating the novel coronavirus is concerned.
“All over the world, countries are extending lockdowns and even in some cases, making it stricter. The only situations where lockdowns have been eased or lifted is when the infection curve is flattened and backed by science or empirical data,” he said in a statement.