THE GHANA Health Service (GHS) has urged the public to go back to the wearing of face masks in the light of the reported emergence of new strains of the COVID-19 Omicron variant currently in circulation across the country.
The Omicron variant of COVID-19 was the main driver of the country’s fourth wave, peaking at more than a thousand new cases daily.
Addressing the media Wednesday, Director-General of the GHS, Dr. Patrick Kumah Aboagye, recommended the wearing of face masks in schools, churches and other enclosed areas as a means to curtail the spread of the virus.
According to him, the cases were identified through the testing of 12 suspected cases, including one case that was reported from the Western Region.
“While health officials work to contain the Monkeypox virus, COVID-19 infections are on the rise, with more cases of the Influenza A virus being reported at several health facilities,” he said.
As the infections begin to rise again, scientists at the West African Centre for Cell Biology of Infectious Pathogens (WACCBIP) say they have detected two new strains which are resistant to the vaccines currently available in the country.
Emphasising on the importance of adhering to the established protocols, Dr. Yaw Bediako, a research fellow at WACCBIP, noted that “If we look at the data, we cannot say that COVID-19 has skipped Africa. Zero prevalence rate, zero positivity of over 70 close to 80 percent means 8 out of 10 people have been within the past 6 months exposed to the virus, so we cannot say that the outbreak is over.”
Meanwhile, five cases of Monkeypox have been confirmed in the Eastern, Bono and Greater Accra Regions, the GHS has revealed.
One of the cases was recorded in a Ghanaian who travelled to the United States of America from Ghana.