Coronavirus outbreak: Health Ministry issues alert to the public

Accra, Jan. 22, GNA –
The Ministry of Health has issued an alert message and guidance information to
health facilities in the 16 regions following the confirmation of the outbreak
of Coronavirus in China.

It said enhanced
surveillance at the points of entry, especially at the Kotoka International
Airport has begun and enhanced screening procedures on all passengers from
China, including; administration of health questionnaire.

It said the virus
was linked to a local animal market, but was also found to spread from one
person to another when an infected person coughs or sneezes on another.

A statement signed
and issued by Mr Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, the Health Minister, in Accra, said
following the notification of member states of the World Health Organisation
(WHO) on the outbreak of the disease, Government had initiated measures to
protect the public from it.

In addition, there
was in-country capacity to diagnose through laboratory testing of the
appropriate samples by the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research.

It said health
facilities have were also alerted to prepare and manage cases during an

The Ministry,
however, advised individuals to keep a distance of at least one step from
persons showing signs of fever, cough, and difficulty in breathing.

The statement
advised the public to ensure regular washing of hands with soap and water, and
hand rubbing with alcohol if available.

It said if contact
with a sick person or with potentially infected surfaces or objects occurs,
those involved must not touch their eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.

It is advisable to
be physically active, drink plenty of fluids, eat well, reduce stress and have
enough sleep

It entreated persons
to seek treatment immediately if an infection was suspected.

It said the disease
was characterised by fever, cough, and difficulties in breathing and so far
four people were confirmed dead through the disease.

Three other
countries including; Thailand, South Korea and Japan have also reported cases
of the disease.