The Western Regional Director of Health, Dr. Jacob Mahama has confirmed that six senior high schools and one nursing training college in the region have recorded a total of 56 COVID-19 cases.
According to him, 309 samples were taken from the seven institutions, which included the Asankragwa Nursing and Midwifery Training School, for testing.
He noted that 56 of the samples came out positive for COVID-19, adding that 139 others are currently waiting for testing.
“As at now, we have 309 samples from six senior high schools and the Asankragwa Nursing and Midwifery Training School. They had 56 positive cases, 149 are negative and 139 are still pending,” he said.
Dr. Mahama said the school with the largest number of positive cases was Nsei SHS which has 26 positives out of 78 samples taken there, adding that Archbishop Porter Girls has 2 positives, Adiembra (2), St. John’s (1), Ahantaman (1), Shama SHS (18) and Asankragwa Nursing and Midwifery Training School (6).
He said the affected schools are yet to be disinfected.
“As a region, we have taken 14,000 samples and sent all to the laboratory. 8,695 are negative, 2,218 are positive and 4,095 are still pending….we ran out of reagents as a country and the reagents are in and they are currently doing the distribution to the various laboratories. As I speak, my people have been given an order to bring their request which was sent yesterday and they are waiting to be called to go for theirs.” he added
On the issue of contamination of samples at the Effia Nkwanta laboratory due to storage capacity, the Western Regional Health Director said he was not aware but that could only happen in the districts and not the metropolis.
He said the Takoradi Veterinary Laboratory, which is currently doing 150 samples a day, instead of 300, can finish the pending samples within 10 days upon receiving reagents.
“I’m not aware of samples that have gone bad. Not in our labs, maybe in the districts. As long as they are in the refrigerator, it cannot go bad or expire. All that we know is that our fridges are full. What they do now is that they send some of the samples to KCCR or Accra. For instance the samples we are taking from the SHS are sent straight to Accra for test. If we get the reagents and more staff, they can reduce the 4,000 backlog to an appreciable minimum within 10 days.”