Child Rights International (CHI), a children’s advocacy organization, has appealed to the government to engage pediatricians to provide specialist care and treatment for children suffering from COVID-19.
Treatment of the disease among children, it said, is a specialized service and must therefore be treated as such.
It indicated that Ghana has not reached the level of risk to determine whether schools should be closed down or not but indicated the growing cases of infection among children is alarming.
A statement issued and signed by Executive Director of Child Rights International Mr Bright Appiah, urged the government to consider random testing in schools and for the Ghana Education Service to intensify its education programmes in schools to reduce infection among school children.
CRI, in a statement copied to the Ghanaian Publisher, indicated that its staff is monitoring activities nationwide and assessing data from the Ghana Health Service, the Ghana Education Service and other sources to prevent the COVID among school children.
“Our interest is to show real data and the behaviour pattern of COVID-19 among children in Ghana and also create a balance for effective policy direction that will be beneficial to children. The best interest of the child is the underpinning principle in this quest,” the statement said.
The organization stated that between 11th March to 9th November, 2020, out of 49,202 who contracted the COVID-19 virus, 2,180 were children below 18 years representing 4.43%.
“From 10th November, 2020 to 4th February, 2021, a total of 1,737 children within the age cohort of 0-17 years have tested positive to COVID-19 representing 1.04% increase.”
“But, the relative months show an exponential increase of COVID-19 in children looking at the related periods of months. Cumulatively, a total of 3,917 children have contracted the virus since March 2020, representing 5.47% of the total contraction rate in Ghana,” the statement said.
CRI stated it decided on three major indicators in determining the severity of COVID among children and these include Cases of infection among children, Cases of admission or Hospitalization of children, and Cases of mortality.
It indicated that though Ghana has not gotten to the level of the 2nd and 3rd indicators, it is still necessary for the country to strictly adhere to the COVID-19 protocols.”
Effective strategies, the statement said, should be put in place to reduce the spread of the virus and measures pursued to provide first-class services for children affected by COVID-19.
Meanwhile Ghana’s Covid-19, death toll is 472, according to Ghana Health Service(GHS).
Ghana also recorded 795 new infections, raising its active cases to 6,707 from a previous 6,411 barely 24 hours since the last update on Monday.
The new infections are from tests conducted as at February 05, 2021.
The latest update further disclosed that 491more people have recovered, bringing the total of clinical recoveries and discharge to 65,149.
One hundred and fourteen (114) of the active cases, it said, were in severe conditions, with 34 in critical condition. These cases are being managed in treatment sites, isolation centers across the country, while some were under home management, the GHS said.
Ghana has so far recorded a total of 72,328 cases of the virus since it confirmed its first two cases in March 2020.
Out of the total confirmed cases, 26,785 were from the General Surveillance; 44,390 cases from the Enhanced Contact Tracing, while 1,153 have been recorded from international travellers disembarking at the Kotoka International Airport since it was reopened on September 1, 2020, the update stated.
A total of 810,040 tests have also been conducted, of which 250,238 are from routine surveillance, 403,120 from contact tracing, while 156,682 are from international travellers arriving through the Kotoka International Airport.
The positivity rate is 8.9 percent and all sixteen regions have an active case.
The Greater Accra Region remains the hotspot for the virus in the country accounting for more than 50 per cent (3,431) of active cases and with a cumulative case count of 42,312.
Ashanti Region has 1,149 active cases while its case count now stands at 13,092 followed by the Western Region with 548 active cases and cumulative cases of 4,043.
Others are: Eastern Region has 242 active cases, cumulative cases is 3,109; Central Region with 258 active case count, total cases now 2,458; Volta Region, 246 active cases, total cases stands at 1,131 ; Bono East Region with 75 active cases and 882 case count and Northern Region has active case count of 151 active cases and cumulative cases of 802.
The rest are:
Upper East Region – 155 active cases, 755 case tally
Western North Region – 42 active cases, 729 cumulative cases
Bono Region- 46 active cases, 705 cumulative cases
Ahafo Region- 15 active cases and 563 cumulative cases
Oti Region- Six active cases and 250 cumulative cases
Upper West Region – 82 active cases and 239 cumulative cases
Savannah Region – Two active case, 68 cumulative cases
North East Region – 10 active cases, 37 cumulative cases