Authorities at the Port of Takoradi in the Western Region are preparing two separate holding bays to handle any case of COVID-19.
One of the bays is inside the Port while the other one is at the GPHA Hospital.
Conducting 3news.com round the first holding bay, Head of Health Services for Port of Takoradi Dr. George Tawiah Tidakabi said: “The first holding bay which is at the wharf has five separate rooms.
“I mean they are independent from each other. The estate department is currently taking stock of all what will be needed for it to become fully functional. So, all what we will require to be able to quarantine any coronavirus case will be fitted in each of the five rooms.”
He said the first bay will be used to quarantine any suspected coronavirus case on board a vessel that calls at the Port.
“We are working in conjunction with the Port Health. Usually, Port Health will get information that a ship is coming and the crew list is made available to them. They will go inside the ship and when a case is suspected they will notify us. This holding bay near the wharf is where the suspect will be brought straight from the ship for us to quarantine. We then inform the regional health directorate and then the necessary emergency protocols will be activated.”
When Dr. Tawiah Tidakabi led 3news.com to the second holding bay at the GPHA Hospital, work was ongoing to put the place in readiness to quarantine any COVID 19 case.
Carpenters were fixing new doors and windows.
“This one here in the hospital is solely for people who will walk into our facility and when we identify a client to have COVID-19 then we will bring the person here and trigger the necessary action.”
Dr. George Taiwah Tidakabi said all staff of the Port of Takoradi and the Sekondi Fishing Harbor have been sensitized about COVID 19.
He added his outfit has in stock the necessary PPEs to be worn to handle any emergency case as well as some beds which are ready to be fitted at the two holding bays.
“Process to procure more PPEs is about 90 percent complete. Ghana Ports and Harbors Authority Board of Directors and Management are behind us with all the necessary fund.”
He said his outfit is in constant talk with the Metro Health Directorate and that there is an ongoing training for onward training of personnel of the various health facilities in the region.
Authorities at the Port Health told 3news.com that they have also intensified their checks before and after when a vessel calls at the Port.
“Now, we have informed all the shipping lines that 72 hours prior to the arrival of their vessels they should furnish us with their port of call list and crew list. The ten point-of-call list will indicate the ten ports of call the ship visited before coming to our port. So, we will study the list as to whether they have been to any of the affected countries. In case they passed through any of the affected countries we assembly ourselves then inform public health directorate and the GPHA medical team… then the crew list enables us to know where the crew are coming from. If they boarded the ship before the onset of the coronavirus then will how to tackle it.”
The Principal Environmental Health Officer at the Port, Jacob Wajah, said since the outbreak of coronavirus his outfit and GPHA have been in constant talks briefing each other about preparedness.
By Eric Yaw Adjei|3news.com|Ghana