Five local manufacturing companies have been selected to start producing nose masks immediately to help fight the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
The Minister of Health, Mr Kwaku Agyemang-Manu, who announced this, said the companies had been tasked to make available 3.6 million nose masks in the next 10 days.
“The five companies that have been selected to produce the nose masks will start production by the end of this week and we expect to take delivery of 3.6 million nose masks within 10 days,” the minister said.
Mr Agyemang-Manu was speaking yesterday when he, in the company of a government delegation, received some personal protection equipment (PPEs) donated by the Chinese government to 18 African countries.
He said the move to produce the nose masks locally would not only ensure that there were more protective equipment in the country but it would also secure the businesses of local manufacturing companies.
He said considering that wearing of nose masks had been encouraged as one of the ways of preventing the spread of COVID-1, it was necessary that more of the equipment were produced.
“As we move forward in the fight against COVID-19, it is becoming increasingly clear that we will all have to begin wearing nose masks for protection and so we need more of the stuff,” he said.
The Health Minister said the government had put in place measures to expand COVID-19 testing in the country and also ensure that results from the tests were not delayed.
Mr Agyemang-Manu gave an assurance that the structures put in place at the national, regional and district levels to test all persons who had been identified through contact tracing for the disease had been strengthened.
He said just as the government and health workers were doing their part to deal with the disease, members of the public must complement that effort by adhering to the guidelines and protocols for containing its spread.
He said also that even though the government was applying local measures to contain the pandemic, it would, all the same, rely on the expertise of countries such as China to help it scale over the challenge.
“The systems for healthcare delivery in Ghana and Africa in general are very fragile. We have not positioned ourselves well enough to do what China did to contain the pandemic. While we are at it, we’ll draw from the Chinese experience to help us succeed,” Mr Agyemang-Manu said.
Adherence to guidelines
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, urged residents of Greater Accra, Kumasi, Tema and Kasoa to adhere strictly to the movements restriction imposed in their localities since it was aimed at quickening efforts to overcome COVID-19.