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General News of Friday, 27 March 2020

Source: GNA

‘Counselling services must be part of coronavirus response’ - GNACC

The GNACC do want want people isolated to have a mental breakdown The GNACC do want want people isolated to have a mental breakdown

The Ghana National Association of Certificated Counsellors (GNACC) has advocated for counselling services to be incorporated into the Public Health response to the COVID-19.

Dr Martha Anang, the Vice President of the Central and Western Regional branch of the Association, said the Government must, therefore, engage certified counsellors and psychologists to be part of the frontline workers to manage the psychological needs of patients and their relatives.

Dr Anang, a Counselling Psychologist, made the call in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Cape Coast on Thursday.

She said in as much as efforts were being made to protect people from getting infected with the COVID-19, prevention of stress and fear must equally be tackled.

This is because the devastating effects of the disease might make people vulnerable to develop traumatic stress disorder and depression, which could affect their mental health.

Dr Anang noted that quarantining could have psychological effects on people’s mental health and advised that those confined must be counselled to mitigate the effects of being isolated.

“This is the time counselling must be taken into consideration and people identified for quarantine be given a counsellor”.

She said the GNACC, as well as the Ghana Psychological Association, were all available to offer their services.

“Imagine the effect isolation will have on someone who stays alone and socialises only at the workplace.”

“And so imagine such a person staying alone in the house without moving out for one month or two weeks of isolation. You can say that the person will watch TV and all of that but I tell you social media can’t solve the problem,” Dr Anang said.

Sharing her opinion on the President’s declaration of a National Day of Fasting and Prayers, Dr Anang indicated that seeking God’s intervention in this moment was not out of place.

She added that all scientists and doctors got their wisdom from God and it was only God who can provide them with wisdom to find a vaccine for the COVID-19.

“Am not surprised about what is going on worldwide and the request by the President of Ghana resorting to prayer in addition to all scientific protocols. In 2016, God gave me message for all Christians indicating that; ‘We have missed the directions he gave us’ and I have written this message in a book titled MISSING THE MARK. I will recommend all to get the message right that what is going on is attributed to the failure of Christians of which I am one".

"Let us all, therefore, rise up to the national call for fasting and we can cast it out of our nation Ghana and the world at large”, she said.

Dr Anang said in parallel to her spiritual beliefs, she also supported the idea of scientific research, hence her decision to accept the role as the Secretary of the COAFS Research Board.

She said the COAFS product, which was waiting for its potency to treat the COVID-19, was a revelation from God through Professor Ato Duncan.

She expressed optimism that the measures put forward by the Government, coupled with God’s intervention through prayers, the virus would be wiped out of the country in no time.

Dr Anang urged the public not to panic though the consequences of the virus were fearful but obey the precautionary protocols laid down by the health personnel to stay safe adding that “getting afraid is not the issue but then doing what is right is what we have to do”.

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