COVID-19: Health facilities reviewing protocols amidst infection of frontline staff

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Officials of Vodafone Ghana in a group picture with some staff of Kumasi South Hospital, during the presentation of the PPE

The Medical Director of the Kumasi South Hospital, Dr. Kwame Ofori Boadu, has said the facility continues to review its safety protocols as well as regularly updating frontline staff on any new evidence of infection as part of measures to ensure their safety while treating COVID-19 patients.

He said, for instance, that there are established standards for the use, disinfection and disposal of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) which if not properly observed could be expose health personnel to the virus.

Against this backdrop, he noted that training for COVID-19 or any other infectious disease is a key process which should take place regularly to among others remind staff of the dangers and precautions that have to be taken in the line of work.

Dr. Boadu’s comments follow the recent revelation that some frontline health workers, in the Ashanti Region, have been infected by COVID-19. The development, he said, is worrying and investigations have already commenced to determine if it was due to improper use of PPE or that the health workers were exposed to infected persons outside the workplace.

The Medical Director of the Kumasi South Hospital, who was speaking at the presentation of PPE to the facility by Vodafone Ghana, emphasized that the disease is real and for that matter cautioned the general public to endeavor to observe the protocols put in place.

On the items presented by Vodafone Ghana, he said the telecoms industry has, with innovation, introduced measures to help Ghanaians cope with the current situation. While expressing gratitude for the donation of the PPE, he also assured the management of Vodafone Ghana that the items will be used for the purpose for which they were donated.

The items donated includes tissue, shoe covers, handwashing buckets, protective face shields, boxes of N95 face masks, disposable gowns, anti-bacterial surface wipes, gallons of hand sanitizers, thermometer guns among others.

Executive Head of Ashanti, Bono and Ahafo, Agyekum Sampong, who led the donation, noted that the gesture is as part of the Vodafone Ghana Foundation’s support in the fight against COVID-19. He said it is one of the many initiatives from Vodafone as part of the commitment to help the government combat this global pandemic and minimise its impact on Ghanaians and businesses.

“Since the outbreak, the Foundation has donated PPE to various hospitals across the country and a similar presentation will be made to the Wa Regional Hospital in the Upper West Region on Friday.”

He also said Vodafone has also launched its pioneering Healthline Medical Call Centre to help provide guidance and dispel the misinformation out there about COVID-19. The Centre is open daily from 8am to 8pm and can be accessed by simply dialing 255 from any Vodafone or MTN number.

He disclosed that Fifty medical doctors, who have been trained in partnership with the Ghana Health Service to offer expert advice on the pandemic, are in charge of the centre.

“Vodafone’s Big Data initiative, which is in partnership with Ghana Statistical Services (GSS) and the Flowminder Foundation, is helping government understand people’s movements to help contain the virus. Together the team has produced analysis, which helps government understand how effective its restrictions have been and enable it to plan its next move in the fight against the virus.”

Furthermore, he said the e-learning platform (www.instantschools.vodafone.com.gh), introduced by Vodafone Ghana, continues to provide free access to a wide range of educational materials for Ghanaian students.

He said Vodafone Ghana will continue to support the fight against this pandemic with unique initiatives that address the country’s specific needs.

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