The Ghana Association of Public Health Technical Officers (GAPHTO) is calling for the establishment of a centre for disease control to help deal with epidemics or outbreaks in the long term.
The Association in a statement urges the government to delay no further since they have the human resource to ensure that Ghana is at the forefront of disease surveillance and control.
“The Association pledges its support and collaboration with the Government (through GHS and MOH) towards the establishment of the Ghana Centre for Disease Control. GAPHTO has the human resource who are already at the forefront of disease surveillance and control activities in Ghana. Members of GAPHTO whose lead efforts have contributed to progress towards eradication and elimination of communicable diseases like poliomyelitis, guinea worm and measles in Ghana, are readily available to provide the needed expertise for the Centre when established.
“Our call for the establishment of this Centre is hereby also extended to the President of the Republic of Ghana, Parliament of Ghana, the GHS Council, WHO, CDC USA and other well-wishing organizations and individuals to support the creation of the Ghana Centre for Disease Control,” GAPHTO said.
GAPHTO also commended all actors and stakeholders in their respective roles in response to the current outbreaks and encouraged them to seek the full implementation of all public health emergency response plans with needed resources to ensure a successful control of outbreaks and lead to recovery.
The statement encouraged all health workers especially the health records assistants, field technicians and technical officers to be resilient in all response efforts in the face of the challenges that may be faced in the execution of their duties.
“This is another opportunity to make a lasting impression on the health system as had been done in the past by doing what you know best, early detection, notification, and response,” the statement said.
GAPHTO had observed the need for a boost in logistical support to be provided for routine services which will help position emergency response measures to be more effective during this time.
The statement said the provision of motorbikes and other vehicular means of transport to enhance effective supervision of peripheral health facilities, especially in newly created districts should be put in place.
In addition, such supervisory activities should be extended to school health facilities in a collaborative manner to ensure best practices are in place.
The Association encouraged the citizenry to take charge and be responsible for their own personal hygiene such as frequent washing of hands with soap under running water, sleeping in ventilated rooms, practice respiratory or cough etiquette and early reporting to the nearest health facility upon signs of ill health.