The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has confirmed that the highly transmissible strain of COVID-19 which originated from India, Delta variant, has been detected within the Ghanaian population.
The Ministry of Information, which confirmed the development, said the relevant agencies are taking steps to ensure that it is contained.
It is unclear the number of people who have so far been detected to have the new strain of the virus but the Ministry of Information, in a series of tweets on Friday, July 2, 2021, said they are “in good health.”
Although the strain of the virus had already been detected in Ghana, it was among persons arriving in the country from abroad.
“At 10:00hours on Friday, July 2, 2021, the Covid-19 task force was advised by Ghana Health Service, that the Delta Variant of the SARS-Cov-2 virus has been recorded within a community (i.e. non-arriving passengers) in the latest round of genomic sequencing”.
“Relevant agencies are taking the necessary steps to ensure that spread is contained. The Positive persons are in good health. The task force will provide further details at 13:00hours on Sunday, July 4th, 2021”
“The general public is advised to adhere strictly to the COVID-19 preventive etiquette while going about permitted activities,” Ghana Health Service indicated.
The Delta variant, which is currently the most contagious, is spreading quickly across the world.
Reports have suggested that the variant may trigger serious illness in persons who are not yet vaccinated.
The Head of the West Africa Centre for Cell Biology and Infectious Pathogens (WACCBIP) at the University of Ghana, Professor Gordon Awendare in an earlier interview with Citi News called for strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols to avoid a spread of the highly contagious variant when it was yet to enter the general population.
“It is not too different from the normal COVID in terms of the clinical presentation. It means that if the original COVID-19 infected ten people for each infected person, this will infect maybe 17 or 18 people. The good thing is that the same protocols will work. It is about how we strictly adhere to those protocols.”
He also advised the government to explore diverse types of vaccines to ensure herd immunity against the contagious virus.
“There are some countries that are using Pfizer, and they have a better record against the fight against COVID-19. If we are still looking for vaccines, let us get whatever we can get, but let us try to get a mixture of the vaccines because they will come in handy.”