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General News of Thursday, 22 July 2021

Source: GNA

Pharmaceutical Society expresses worry over increasing COVID-19 cases

Stakeholders including the GMA are warning of a new wave of infections Stakeholders including the GMA are warning of a new wave of infections

The Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana (PSGH) has expressed concern over the increasing number of new cases of COVID-19 over the past few weeks.

It said of greater concern is the fact that most of the new cases are due to the delta strain which has turned out to be more virulent in many countries leading to more severe disease, increased hospitalization and even deaths.

"The PSGH notes that the country may gradually erase the successes that have been chalked in our collective fight against the pandemic," it said in a statement.

The statement said despite the emergence of the more virulent strain of the virus, people were not following recommended behaviours to protect themselves and others from the virus.

"Pandemic fatigue has evolved gradually over time and is affected by cultural, social and economic demands."

Due to low vaccination rates and increased social mixing and social mobility, which increases the number of contacts that individuals have, the delta strain could easily become the dominant strain, and this could potentially overwhelm our healthcare system.

The PSGH said the increasing havoc being caused by the Delta strain of the virus in many countries should make Ghanaians sit up and take the COVID-19 safety protocols seriously.

The PSGH, therefore, urged pharmacists and the pharmaceutical workforce to strictly enforce the COVID-19 safety protocols.

This should include the protocols to be observed among staff including reducing the number of staff on duty, wearing of the requisite PPEs, observing sick duty protocols, and isolation among others. Protocols on cleaning of the pharmacy premises and maintaining hygiene should be observed.

To clients and the general public, the PSGH advised that protocols on social distancing, enforcement of wearing of nosemasks and handwashing by clients should be strictly be adhered to.

The PSGH urged the public to consider the alerts from healthcare professionals and health authorities seriously and observe all the recommended protocols including frequent handwashing, use of hand sanitizers when handwashing is not possible and always maintaining social distancing.

It also called on the public to make themselves available to be vaccinated against the COVID-19 during the next round of vaccination.

Fears regarding safety and credibility of vaccines, arising out of many myths and unfounded conspiracy theories can stifle efforts to promote vaccination as the surest way to end the COVID-19 pandemic.

The PSGH called on the Ministry of Health and the government to facilitate the acquisition of more vaccines to enable the resumption of the vaccination efforts to curb the development and spread more virulent strains of the virus.

"We also call on the government, as a matter of utmost urgency to further intensify the pandemic response by strengthening diseases surveillance and public health interventions," it added.

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