25 already tested positive
Tension grips construction camp as workers await COVID-19 test results
There is heightened tension inside the camp of the company constructing the Tema-Mpakadan railway line, AFCON Construction as test results to determine the COVID-19 status of members of staff delay.
With 25 residents of the camp already testing positive, a letter from the Eastern Regional Director of Health Services updating the Director-General of the Ghana Service on the situation in the Lower Manya Krobo Municipality, the epicentre of the region’s outbreak said, “Samples were sent a week ago and results are trickling in but only of positives. There is heightened tension and anxiety at the camp since it is still not known who is negative.”
“There is growing unease at the Camp B as positive cases are quarantined and clinically managed on site. Discussions have begun with the Camp’s managers to identify a place where all positives could be managed henceforth.
“It is impossible to know what proportion of the 244 samples sent have been tested to yield the 22[ as of Friday] positive results so far received,” it said of the results coming from the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research.
AFCONS has three camps where its staff are being accommodated with camps B hosting 244 residents while C has about 36. The statistics at Camp A is yet to be made available to the Ghana Health Service.
The situational report signed by Dr Alberta Adjebeng Biritwum-Nyarko and dated April 10, 2020, The outbreak was quickly evolving, and quick pragmatic steps had been planned to curtail it.
According to the report there had not been a confirmed case outside the walls of the camp, but there are fears that situation could change as “anecdotal evidence suggests the camp staff paid night-time visits to some persons within the Kpong Township before the lockdown on Camp B.”
“Such persons shall be traced within the Kpong Township starting tomorrow [Saturday] with the help of the Assembly man for the area. All contacts are being followed up and any other secondary contacts not yet seen are being traced,” the report said.
The index case of COVID-19 in the Eastern Region was identified on March 31, 2020 at AFCON Camp B in Kpong in the Lower Manya Krobo Municipality.
“ The case [patient] is doing well and being managed on site under self-quarantine. 244 contacts were identified on the same site and they were all tested as primary contacts of the index case due to the congregate way in which they live.
On April 9, 2020, results for 15 positive cases were received bringing the total number of cases to 16 at the camp.
The next day, an additional seven positive results were received such that the total positive cases at AFCON camp B stands at 23, the report said.
However, the Ghana Health Service website has pegged the region’s number of patients at 25.
Ghana’s cases shot up to 408 on Saturday, an increase from 378 on Friday when President Akufo-Addo addressed the nation, extending the partial lockdown of Accra, Tema, Kumasi and Kasoa to one more week.