Health alert! Passengers using Kotoka Int. Airport likely to get viruses

Passengers who use the domestic section of the Kotoka International Airport in Accra are likely to contract infections from micro- organisms due to some unhygienic practices being engaged in by officials.

Officials at the Airport use one glove to do body searches on all passengers who travel through the domestic section of Ghana’s main airport; a situation health authorities say exposes the people to bacteria, fungi, and virus.

Again, no hand sanitizers have been provided in the facility- both halls and washrooms- which is used by all passengers of the country’s domestic flights, a Ghana News Agency report quoted a health official who used the airport last Friday.

Dr Anthony Enimil, who is the West African World Health Organization Coordinator in Charge of Tuberculosis, told the Ghana News Agency in Kumasi that security persons at the airport are most likely pick microorganisms (bacteria, viruses, fungi) from one person and transfer it to other persons due to the prevailing practice.

“Within the Airport, passengers go through many activities such as using toilets (washrooms), sneezing into their hands, shaking friends and so forth”, he said, noting the practice expose other passengers to microorganisms from infected passengers through the use of a single hand glove.

Expressing concern about the situation, he said when an infected person is searched with a glove and other passengers are searched later with the same glove, those passengers are likely to pick germs.

Dr. Enimil is a Pediatrician in charge of adolescent TB at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Kumasi and also a lecturer at the University of Development Studies in Tamale in the Northern Region.

READ ALSO:  Accident on Accra-Kumasi highway causes traffic

He has consequently advised the Airport authorities to adhere to the use of a pair of clean disposable gloves on each passenger, and make hand sanitizers available for the security to use in cleaning their hands after each passenger is searched to avoid the spread of infections.

“Disposal gloves are very cheap and therefore, there is no justification for one pair of gloves to be used on all passengers, at least, each passenger should have a clean pair of gloves used on him/her”, he added.

According to the Ghana News Agency, efforts at getting the Public Relations officer of the Ghana Airport Company to respond to the claim proved futile.