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1.
PLoS One ; 16(12): e0261849, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1623664

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Tuberculosis (TB) and COVID-19 pandemics are both diseases of public health threat globally. Both diseases are caused by pathogens that infect mainly the respiratory system, and are involved in airborne transmission; they also share some clinical signs and symptoms. We, therefore, took advantage of collected sputum samples at the early stage of COVID-19 outbreak in Ghana to conduct differential diagnoses of long-standing endemic respiratory illness, particularly tuberculosis. METHODOLOGY: Sputum samples collected through the enhanced national surveys from suspected COVID-19 patients and contact tracing cases were analyzed for TB. The sputum samples were processed using Cepheid's GeneXpert MTB/RIF assay in pools of 4 samples to determine the presence of Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex. Positive pools were then decoupled and analyzed individually. Details of positive TB samples were forwarded to the NTP for appropriate case management. RESULTS: Seven-hundred and seventy-four sputum samples were analyzed for Mycobacterium tuberculosis in both suspected COVID-19 cases (679/774, 87.7%) and their contacts (95/774, 12.3%). A total of 111 (14.3%) were diagnosed with SARS CoV-2 infection and six (0.8%) out of the 774 individuals tested positive for pulmonary tuberculosis: five (83.3%) males and one female (16.7%). Drug susceptibility analysis identified 1 (16.7%) rifampicin-resistant tuberculosis case. Out of the six TB positive cases, 2 (33.3%) tested positive for COVID-19 indicating a coinfection. Stratifying by demography, three out of the six (50%) were from the Ayawaso West District. All positive cases received appropriate treatment at the respective sub-district according to the national guidelines. CONCLUSION: Our findings highlight the need for differential diagnosis among COVID-19 suspected cases and regular active TB surveillance in TB endemic settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Coinfection/diagnosis , Coinfection/epidemiology , Mycobacterium tuberculosis/genetics , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/diagnosis , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/epidemiology , Antibiotics, Antitubercular/pharmacology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/virology , Coinfection/virology , Diagnosis, Differential , Drug Resistance, Bacterial/drug effects , Female , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , Male , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Mycobacterium tuberculosis/drug effects , Rifampin/pharmacology , Sputum/microbiology , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/microbiology
2.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(1)2022 Jan 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1613762

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: There is paucity of data on determinants of length of COVID-19 admissions and long COVID, an emerging long-term sequel of COVID-19, in Ghana. Therefore, this study identified these determinants and discussed their policy implications. METHOD: Data of 2334 patients seen at the main COVID-19 treatment centre in Ghana were analysed in this study. Their characteristics, such as age, education level and comorbidities, were examined as explanatory variables. The dependent variables were length of COVID-19 hospitalisations and long COVID. Negative binomial and binary logistic regressions were fitted to investigate the determinants. RESULT: The regression analyses showed that, on average, COVID-19 patients with hypertension and diabetes mellitus spent almost 2 days longer in hospital (p = 0.00, 95% CI = 1.42-2.33) and had 4 times the odds of long COVID (95% CI = 1.61-10.85, p = 0.003) compared to those with no comorbidities. In addition, the odds of long COVID decreased with increasing patient's education level (primary OR = 0.73, p = 0.02; secondary/vocational OR = 0.26, p = 0.02; tertiary education OR = 0.23, p = 0.12). CONCLUSION: The presence of hypertension and diabetes mellitus determined both length of hospitalisation and long COVID among patients with COVID-19 in Ghana. COVID-19 prevention and management policies should therefore consider these factors.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cross-Sectional Studies , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , Length of Stay , SARS-CoV-2
3.
BMJ Open ; 12(1): e052752, 2022 01 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1613004

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: It has been suggested that ethnic minorities have been disproportionally affected by the COVID-19. We aimed to determine whether prevalence and correlates of past SARS-CoV-2 exposure varied between six ethnic groups in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. DESIGN, SETTING, PARTICIPANTS: Participants aged 25-79 years enrolled in the Healthy Life in an Urban Setting population-based prospective cohort (n=16 889) were randomly selected within ethnic groups and invited to participate in a cross-sectional COVID-19 seroprevalence substudy. OUTCOME MEASURES: We tested participants for SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies and collected information on SARS-CoV-2 exposures. We estimated prevalence and correlates of SARS-CoV-2 exposure within ethnic groups using survey-weighted logistic regression adjusting for age, sex and calendar time. RESULTS: Between 24 June and 9 October 2020, we included 2497 participants. Adjusted SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence was comparable between ethnic Dutch (24/498; 5.1%, 95% CI 2.8% to 7.4%), South-Asian Surinamese (22/451; 4.9%, 95% CI 2.2% to 7.7%), African Surinamese (22/400; 8.3%, 95% CI 3.1% to 13.6%), Turkish (30/408; 7.9%, 95% CI 4.4% to 11.4%) and Moroccan (32/391; 7.2%, 95% CI 4.2% to 10.1%) participants, but higher among Ghanaians (95/327; 26.3%, 95% CI 18.5% to 34.0%). 57.1% of SARS-CoV-2-positive participants did not suspect or were unsure of being infected, which was lowest in African Surinamese (18.2%) and highest in Ghanaians (90.5%). Correlates of SARS-CoV-2 exposure varied across ethnic groups, while the most common correlate was having a household member suspected of infection. In Ghanaians, seropositivity was associated with older age, larger household sizes, living with small children, leaving home to work and attending religious services. CONCLUSIONS: No remarkable differences in SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence were observed between the largest ethnic groups in Amsterdam after the first wave of infections. The higher infection seroprevalence observed among Ghanaians, which passed mostly unnoticed, warrants wider prevention efforts and opportunities for non-symptom-based testing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Aged , Child , Cross-Sectional Studies , Ghana , Humans , Netherlands/epidemiology , Prevalence , Prospective Studies , Seroepidemiologic Studies
4.
Afr J Prim Health Care Fam Med ; 13(1): e1-e3, 2021 Dec 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1593121

ABSTRACT

Chronic non-communicable diseases contribute significantly to Ghana's disease burden. Ghana's ability to achieve universal health coverage is threatened by the rising burden of chronic non-communicable diseases. There is a high unmet need for cardiovascular diseases care, with primary health care for cardiovascular diseases not being readily available, equitable, or sensitive to the requirements of target populations. The contribution of family physicians in the management of the chronic disease burden through care continuity cannot be overemphasised. This is a short report of the implementation of a chronic care clinic by a family physician in Manna Mission Hospital, which is located in the Greater Accra region of Ghana. Before the implementation, there was no such clinic in the hospital and patients with chronic conditions who visited the facility were sometimes lost to follow-up. The clinic which commenced in January 2019 has provided care for patients with chronic non-communicable diseases to date. The most common chronic diseases managed at the clinic include hypertension and heart failure, diabetes, stroke, asthma, sickle cell disease, and joint disorders. This report gives an account of the contribution of family physicians to chronic disease burden management through continuity of care in a low-resource setting like Ghana.


Subject(s)
Continuity of Patient Care , Physicians, Family , Chronic Disease , Disease Management , Ghana , Humans
5.
Inquiry ; 58: 469580211067479, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1598486

ABSTRACT

To assess the prevalence and factors associated with psychological distress (PD) and Medical Laboratory Professionals (MLPs) involvement in COVID-19-related duties. This study adopted an online cross-sectional, nationally stratified survey among 473 MLPs using Google Form with a designated link; Depression, anxiety, and stress scale-21 (DASS-21) was used to measure depression, anxiety, and stress (secondary outcome). We employed generalized Negative Binomial (NBR) and Poisson regression analytical approach to our study outcomes. All analyses were performed using Stata 16, and P-value≤.05 deemed significant. The overall DASS-21 score ranged from asymptomatic psychological distress to severe symptomatic PD. The prevalence of depression, anxiety, and stress were 9.1 [95%CI=6.8-12.0], 17.8 [95%CI=14.6-21.5], and 7.5 [95%CI=5.4-10.1], respectively. The result evinced a high and significant association; the univariate NBR predicted a significant increase of PD score by 12% and 18% among participants who were involved in one and two or more COVID-19-related duties, respectively, (ß[95%CI] = .12 [.05-.18] and .18 [.10-.26], respectively). A binary outcome predicted approximately 2-folds of overall psychological distress among participants involved in two or more COVID-19-related duties compared with non-involvement (adjusted Prevalence Ratio [95%CI]= 2.34 [1.12-4.85]). For depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms, both univariate and multivariate data analyses evinced a higher disadvantage among MLP involved in COVID-19-related duties. We observed a high tendency of experiencing significant psychological distress amongst MLP involved in COVID-19-related duties. Experience of psychological distress increased with deeper involvement in COVID-19-related activities. Psychological support should be extended to MLPs to limit the effect of these negative emotions on their cognitive and social behavior as well as job performance.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Psychological Distress , Cross-Sectional Studies , Depression/epidemiology , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , Laboratories , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
6.
Biomed Res Int ; 2021: 6995096, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1573872

ABSTRACT

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, early modelling studies estimated a reduction in childhood vaccinations in low- and middle-income countries. Regular provision of both curative and preventive services such as antenatal care and childhood immunizations has been negatively affected since the onset of the pandemic. Our study was aimed at examining the impact that the pandemic had on childhood vaccination services at the Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH). A mixed methods study design was employed for the study, which was conducted at the Child Welfare Clinic (CWC) of the TTH. With quantitative approach, we retrospectively looked at the uptake of the various vaccines during the pandemic era, defined as the period between 1st March 2020 and 28th February, 2021, and the prepandemic era defined as the period 1st March 2019 to 29th February, 2020. The qualitative approach was used to understand the perspective of five healthcare providers at the CWC and the four caregivers of children who have missed a vaccine or delayed in coming, on the factors accounting for any observed change. Data analysis was done using Microsoft Excel 2016 and thematic content analysis. Quantitative data were presented in frequencies, percentages, and line graphs. With the exception of the Measles Rubella (MR) 2 vaccine, we observed a decline ranging from 47% (2298) to 10.5% (116), with the greatest decline seen in the BCG and the least decline seen in the MR1 vaccine. The month of May 2020 saw the greatest decline, that is, 70.6% (813). A decline of 38.3% (4473) was noted when comparison was made between the designated prepandemic and pandemic eras, for all the vaccines in our study. Fear of COVID-19 infection and misinformation were commonly given as reasons for the decline. Catch-up immunization schedule should be instituted to curtail possible future outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases.


Subject(s)
Immunization Programs/trends , Vaccination/trends , BCG Vaccine , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/psychology , Female , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Measles Vaccine , Pandemics , Pregnancy , Retrospective Studies , Tertiary Care Centers/trends
7.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 18(24)2021 12 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1555017

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected populations globally, including Ghana. Knowledge of the COVID-19 disease, and the application of preventive public health interventions are pivotal to its control. Besides a lockdown, measures taken against the spread of the virus include the wearing of face masks, social distancing, regular hand washing with soap and, more recently, vaccination against the virus. In order to establish a possible link between the knowledge of the disease and compliance with preventive measures, including vaccination, a cross-sectional study employing an interview-structured questionnaire was conducted in six regions of Ghana (n = 1560). An adequate level of knowledge of COVID-19 (69.9%) was reported. The linear multiple regression analysis further explicated the differences in the knowledge of COVID-19 among the respondents by their knowledge of cholera and influenza (adjusted R-Square = 0.643). Despite this profound knowledge of the illness, two thirds of the respondents were unwilling to follow basic preventive measures and only 35.3% were willing to be vaccinated. Amazingly, neither knowledge of COVID-19 nor the socio-demographic characteristics had any meaningful influence on the practice of preventive measures. Personal attitude leading to efficient public compliance with preventive measures, therefore, is a critical issue demanding special attention and effective interventions by the government and locals with authority to curb the spread of the pandemic which surpasses the traditional channels of public health communication. This includes a roll-out of persuasion, possibly including public figures and influencers, and in any case, a balanced and open discussion addressing the acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine in order to avoid new variants and comparable problems currently facing many countries of Western Europe. Indeed, a profound hesitancy against vaccination may turn African countries such as Ghana for many years into hotspots of new viral variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , COVID-19 Vaccines , Communicable Disease Control , Cross-Sectional Studies , Ghana/epidemiology , Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires
8.
Hum Resour Health ; 19(1): 136, 2021 11 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1505543

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Health care workers (HCWs) are among the high-risk groups in contracting and dying from COVID-19. World Health Organization estimates that over 10,000 HCWs in Africa have been infected with COVID-19 making it a significant occupational health hazard to HCWs. In Ghana, over 100 HCWs have already been infected and dozen others died from the virus. Acceptability and uptake of the COVID-19 vaccine is therefore critical to promote health and safety of HCWs as the country battles out of a third wave of the pandemic. OBJECTIVE: The study sought to ascertain the correlates of HCWs likelihood of participating in a COVID-19 vaccine trial and accepting the vaccine when given the opportunity. METHODS: The study was a web-based cross-sectional survey among HCWs (n = 1605) in all sixteen (16) administrative regions in Ghana. Data were analyzed with STATA statistical analysis software (version 14). Chi-square (X2) and Fisher's exact tests were used to test for differences in categorical variables; bivariate probit regression analysis with Average Marginal Effect (AME) was employed to ascertain the determinants of HCWs' likelihood of participating in a COVID-19 vaccine trial and taking the vaccine. RESULTS: It was found that 48% of HCWs will participate in a COVID-19 vaccine trial when given the opportunity; 70% will accept the COVID-19 vaccine; younger HCWs (AME = 0.28, SE = 0.16, p < 0.1), non-Christians (AME = 21, SE = 0.09, p < 0.05) and those who worked in faith-based health facilities (AME = 18, SE = 0.07, p < 0.05) were more likely to participate in a COVID-19 vaccine trial. Female HCWs (AME = - 11, SE = 0.04, p < 0.05) and those with lower educational qualification were less likely to accept a COVID-19 vaccine (AME = - 0.16, SE = 0.08, p < 0.1). Reasons cited for unwillingness to participate in a COVID-19 vaccine trial or uptake the vaccine were mainly fear, safety concerns, mistrust, uncertainty, spiritual and religious beliefs. CONCLUSIONS: Acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine appear to be high among HCWs; conversely, willingness to volunteer for the vaccine trial was low. Continuous targeted and integrated public health education for HCWs will enhance vaccine acceptability to promote safety and population health in the global south as Ghana intensifies efforts to produce COVID-19 vaccines locally.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , COVID-19 Vaccines , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Ghana , Health Personnel , Health Promotion , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
9.
Pan Afr Med J ; 40: 76, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1497894

ABSTRACT

Introduction: COVID-19 pandemic has had a greater psychological impact on patients with chronic ailments such as diabetes mellitus, tuberculosis, and HIV/AIDS compared to those without chronic conditions. We explored the psychological impacts of COVID-19 among people living with diabetes mellitus in Ghana. Methods: this study employed a hospital-based cross-sectional design involving 157 diabetes mellitus patients aged 20 years and above. We assessed diabetes distress by the seventeen-item diabetes stress (DDS17) scale and COVID-19 worries by 3 specific benchmarks: "worry about overly affected due to diabetes if infected with COVID-19", "worry about people with diabetes characterized as a risk group" and "worry about not able to manage diabetes if infected with COVID-19". A close-ended questionnaire was used in data collection. Results: of 157 diabetic patients interviewed, the majority had type 2 diabetes mellitus with known complications and only 42.7% were managing COVID-19 symptoms. The participants showed moderate to high level of COVID-19 specific worry, moderate fear of isolation, and low level of diabetes-associated distress. About 33.8% of the study population expressed a sense of worry towards the pandemic. The logistic regression showed that age, employment status, and presence of other chronic diseases were significantly associated with worries about being overly affected if infected with COVID-19 due to their diabetes status. Age and sex were associated with worries about people with diabetes being characterized as a risk group and age, sex and employment status were associated with participants who were worried about not being able to manage diabetes if infected with COVID-19. Conclusion: the general trend indicates a sense of worry among diabetes patients during the COVID-19 pandemic which is associated with poorer psychological health. Clients' education and counseling on COVID-19 are necessary to address some of their concerns to minimize the level of anxiety and emotional stress in these individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/psychology , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1/psychology , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/psychology , Adult , Age Factors , Anxiety/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Fear , Female , Ghana , Humans , Male , Mental Health , Middle Aged , Risk Factors , Sex Factors , Stress, Psychological/epidemiology , Surveys and Questionnaires , Young Adult
10.
PLoS One ; 16(10): e0258164, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1496504

ABSTRACT

This paper uses publicly available data and various statistical models to estimate the basic reproduction number (R0) and other disease parameters for Ghana's early COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. We also test the effectiveness of government imposition of public health measures to reduce the risk of transmission and impact of the pandemic, especially in the early phase. R0 is estimated from the statistical model as 3.21 using a 0.147 estimated growth rate [95% C.I.: 0.137-0.157] and a 15-day time to recovery after COVID-19 infection. This estimate of the initial R0 is consistent with others reported in the literature from other parts of Africa, China and Europe. Our results also indicate that COVID-19 transmission reduced consistently in Ghana after the imposition of public health interventions-such as border restrictions, intra-city movement, quarantine and isolation-during the first phase of the pandemic from March to May 2020. However, the time-dependent reproduction number (Rt) beyond mid-May 2020 does not represent the true situation, given that there was not a consistent testing regime in place. This is also confirmed by our Jack-knife bootstrap estimates which show that the positivity rate over-estimates the true incidence rate from mid-May 2020. Given concerns about virus mutations, delays in vaccination and a possible new wave of the pandemic, there is a need for systematic testing of a representative sample of the population to monitor the reproduction number. There is also an urgent need to increase the availability of testing for the general population to enable early detection, isolation and treatment of infected individuals to reduce progression to severe disease and mortality.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics/prevention & control , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , Models, Statistical , Public Health , Quarantine
11.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 21108, 2021 10 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1493205

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2, the virus causing the COVID-19 pandemic emerged in December 2019 in China and raised fears it could overwhelm healthcare systems worldwide. Mutations of the virus are monitored by the GISAID database from which we downloaded sequences from four West African countries Ghana, Gambia, Senegal and Nigeria from February 2020 to April 2020. We subjected the sequences to phylogenetic analysis employing the nextstrain pipeline. We found country-specific patterns of viral variants and supplemented that with data on novel variants from June 2021. Until April 2020, variants carrying the crucial Europe-associated D614G amino acid change were predominantly found in Senegal and Gambia, and combinations of late variants with and early variants without D614G in Ghana and Nigeria. In June 2021 all variants carried the D614G amino acid substitution. Senegal and Gambia exhibited again variants transmitted from Europe (alpha or delta), Ghana a combination of several variants and in Nigeria the original Eta variant. Detailed analysis of distinct samples revealed that some might have circulated latently and some reflect migration routes. The distinct patterns of variants within the West African countries point at their global transmission via air traffic predominantly from Europe and only limited transmission between the West African countries.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Computational Biology/methods , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2 , Africa, Western , Biodiversity , China , Europe , Gambia , Genetic Variation , Genome, Viral , Geography , Ghana , Humans , Nigeria , Phylogeny , Senegal , Time Factors
12.
BMC Health Serv Res ; 21(1): 1115, 2021 Oct 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477417

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: As the global strategies to fight the SARS-COV-2 infection (COVID-19) evolved, response strategies impacted the magnitude and distribution of health-related expenditures. Although the economic consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic has been dire, and its true scale is yet to be ascertained, one key component of the response is the management of infected persons which its cost has not been adequately examined, especially in Africa. METHODS: To fill gaps in context-specific cost of treating COVID-19 patients, we adopted a health system's perspective and a bottom-up, point of care resource use data collection approach to estimate the cost of clinical management of COVID-19 infection in Ghana. The analysis was based on the national protocol for management of COVID-19 patients at the time, whether in public or private settings. No patients were enrolled into the study as it was entirely a protocol-based cost of illness analysis. RESULT: We found that resource use and average cost of treatment per COVID-19 case varied significantly by disease severity level and treatment setting. The average cost of treating COVID-19 patient in Ghana was estimated to be US$11,925 (GH¢68,929) from the perspective of the health system; ranging from US$282 (GH¢1629) for patients with mild/asymptomatic disease condition managed at home to about US$23,382 (GH¢135,149) for critically ill patients requiring sophisticated and specialised care in hospitals. The cost of treatment increased by some 20 folds once a patient moved from home management to the treatment centre. Overheard costs accounted for 63-71% of institutionalised care compared to only 6% for home-based care. The main cost drivers in overhead category in the institutionalised care were personal protective equipment (PPEs) and transportation, whilst investigations (COVID-19 testing) and staff time for follow-up were the main cost drivers for home-based care. CONCLUSION: Cost savings could be made by early detection and effective treatment of COVID-19 cases, preferably at home, before any chance of deterioration to the next worst form of the disease state, thereby freeing up more resources for other aspects of the fight against the pandemic. Policy makers in Ghana should thus make it a top priority to intensify the early detection and case management of COVID-19 infections.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19 Testing , Cost of Illness , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics , Severity of Illness Index
13.
Nurs Open ; 8(6): 3161-3169, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1460255

ABSTRACT

AIM: The study explored the experiences of women with breast cancer undergoing chemotherapy at Ho Teaching Hospital. DESIGN: A qualitative design which was exploratory and descriptive in nature was employed. METHODS: Purposive sampling was used to recruit participants. Data were collected using a semi-structured interview guide. Saturation of data was reached after the eighth participant was interviewed. The interviews were audio-recorded and lasted between 30-70 min, and the data were analysed concurrently with data collection using content analysis. Three major themes emerged. RESULTS: Participants experienced hair loss, changes in skin and nail pigmentation and social isolation. The study further revealed that inadequate access to information from healthcare providers and lack of resources coupled with financial constraints were among the major challenges participants faced. However, varied supports from significant others were of much help which enabled participants to go through their chemotherapy successfully.


Subject(s)
Breast Neoplasms , Breast Neoplasms/drug therapy , Female , Ghana/epidemiology , Hospitals, Teaching , Humans , Qualitative Research
14.
Ghana Med J ; 54(4 Suppl): 117-120, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436205

ABSTRACT

This is a case report of a 55-year-old man with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus who presented with progressive breathlessness, chest pain and hyperglycaemia. An initial impression of a chest infection was made. Management was initiated with antibiotics, but this was unsuccessful, and he continued to desaturate. A screen for Coronavirus Disease of 2019 (COVID-19) returned positive. There was no prodrome of fever or flu-like illness or known contact with a patient known to have COVID-19. This case is instructive as he didn't fit the typical case definition for suspected COVID-19. There is significant community spread in Ghana, therefore COVID-19 should be a differential diagnosis in patients who present with hyperglycaemia and respiratory symptoms in the absence of a febrile illness. Primary care doctors must have a high index of suspicion in cases of significant hyperglycaemia and inability to maintain oxygen saturation. Patients known to have diabetes and those not known to have diabetes may develop hyperglycaemia subsequent to COVID-19. A high index of suspicion is crucial for early identification, notification for testing, isolation, treatment, contact tracing and possible referral or coordination of care with other specialists. Early identification will protect healthcare workers and patients alike from cross-infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing , COVID-19/diagnosis , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/virology , Chest Pain/diagnosis , Chest Pain/virology , Diagnosis, Differential , Dyspnea/diagnosis , Dyspnea/virology , Ghana , Humans , Hyperglycemia/diagnosis , Hyperglycemia/virology , Male , Middle Aged , Primary Health Care , Urban Health Services
15.
Ghana Med J ; 54(4 Suppl): 113-116, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436204

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak in the Hubei province of China has rapidly transformed into a global pandemic. In response to the first few reported cases of COVID-19, the government of Ghana implemented comprehensive social and public health interventions aimed at containing the disease, albeit its effect on medical education is less clear. Undoubtedly, the COVID-19 has brought changes that may impact the plan of career progression for both students and faculty. Hitherto, medical education had students getting into contact with patients and faculty in a facility setting. Their physical presence in both in-and outpatients' settings has been a tradition of early clinical immersion experiences and the clerkship curriculum. Rotating between departments makes the students potential vectors and victims for COVID-19. COVID-19 has the potential to affect students throughout the educational process. The pandemic has led to a complete paradigm shift in the mode of instruction in a clinical care setting. Inperson training has either been reduced or cancelled in favour of virtual forms of pedagogy. The clinics have also seen a reduction in a variety of surgical and medical cases. This situation may result in potential gaps in their training. Outpatient clinics have transitioned mainly to telemedicine, thus minimizing students' exposure to clinic encounters. Faced with this pandemic, medical educators are finding ways to best ensure rigorous training that will produce competent physicians. This article discusses the status of medical education and the effect of COVID-19 and explores potential future effects in a resource-limited country. Funding: None declared.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Curriculum/trends , Education, Distance/trends , Education, Medical/methods , Students, Medical , Educational Status , Forecasting , Ghana , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
16.
Ghana Med J ; 54(4 Suppl): 104-106, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436202

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted healthcare negatively across the globe. The practice of gastroenterology has been affected especially gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy which is considered high risk for transmission of the virus. As a community of practitioners there is the need to share information and make evidence-based statements to guide GI practice in Ghana. This GASLIDD position statement based on the growing and rapidly evolving body of knowledge is to provide up to date information on the COVID-19 disease and guidance for the practice of gastroenterology in Ghana and beyond. It is to help the GI community of practice to maintain the highest level of health delivery and safety for our patients, staff, community and GI practitioners. Funding: Self-funded.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal/standards , Gastroenterology/standards , Infection Control/standards , Practice Guidelines as Topic , Ghana , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Societies, Medical
17.
Ghana Med J ; 54(4 Suppl): 100-103, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436201

ABSTRACT

With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare systems and their provision of care has globally been challenged, including the delivery of Oral healthcare. In Ghana, it has become imperative that healthcare delivery including the practice of Dentistry and its sub-specialties be re-oriented in our peculiar setting to ensure minimal risk of spread of the infection. This article discusses the impact of COVID-19 on the practice of Dentistry in the country.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Delivery of Health Care/trends , Dentistry/trends , Infection Control/trends , Practice Patterns, Dentists'/trends , Ghana , Humans , Oral Health/trends , SARS-CoV-2
18.
Ghana Med J ; 54(4 Suppl): 97-99, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436200

ABSTRACT

Computed Tomography (CT) scan of the chest plays an important role in the diagnosis and management of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the disease caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. COVID-19 pneumonia shows typical CT Scan features which can aid diagnoses and therefore help in the early detection and isolation of infected patients. CT scanners are readily available in many parts of Ghana. It is able to show findings typical for COVID-19 infection of the chest, even in instances where Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction (RTPCR) misses the diagnosis. Little is known about the diagnostic potential of chest CT scan and COVID-19 among physicians even though CT scan offers a high diagnostic accuracy.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , Lung/diagnostic imaging , Symptom Assessment/methods , Tomography, X-Ray Computed , Adult , Aged , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19 Testing/statistics & numerical data , Early Diagnosis , Female , Ghana , Humans , Lung/virology , Male , Middle Aged , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensitivity and Specificity
19.
Ghana Med J ; 54(4 Suppl): 86-96, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436199

ABSTRACT

Since March 2020, Ghana's creative arts communities have tracked the complex facets of the COVID-19 pandemic through various art forms. This paper reports a study that analysed selected 'COVID art forms' through arts and health and critical health psychology frameworks. Art forms produced between March and July 2020, and available in the public sphere - traditional media, social media and public spaces - were collated. The data consisted of comedy, cartoons, songs, murals and textile designs. Three key functions emerged from analysis: health promotion (comedy, cartoons, songs); disease prevention (masks); and improving the aesthetics of the healthcare environment (murals). Textile designs performed broader socio-cultural functions of memorialising and political advocacy. Similar to earlier HIV/AIDS and Ebola arts interventions in other African countries, these Ghanaian COVID art forms translated public health information on COVID-19 in ways that connected emotionally, created social awareness and improved public understanding. However, some art forms had limitations: for example, songs that edutained using fear-based strategies or promoting conspiracy theories on the origins and treatment of COVID-19, and state-sponsored visual art that represented public health messaging decoupled from socio-economic barriers to health protection. These were likely to undermine the public health communication goals of behaviour modification. We outline concrete approaches to incorporate creative arts into COVID-19 public health interventions and post-pandemic health systems strengthening in Ghana. Funding: None declared.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Health Communication/methods , Health Promotion/methods , Medicine in the Arts , Public Health/methods , Behavior Therapy/methods , Creativity , Ghana , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
20.
Ghana Med J ; 54(4 Suppl): 77-85, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436198

ABSTRACT

Background: A novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 is currently causing a worldwide pandemic. The first cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection were recorded in Ghana on March 12, 2020. Since then, the country has been combatting countrywide community spread. This report describes how the Virology Department, Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) is supporting the Ghana Health Service (GHS) to diagnose infections with this virus in Ghana. Methods: The National Influenza Centre (NIC) in the Virology Department of the NMIMR, adopted real-time Polymerase Chain Reaction (rRT-PCR) assays for the diagnosis of the SARS-CoV-2 in January 2020. Samples from suspected cases and contact tracing across Ghana were received and processed for SARS-CoV-2. Samples were 'pooled' to enable simultaneous batch testing of samples without reduced sensitivity. Outcomes: From February 3 to August 21, the NMIMR processed 283 946 (10%) samples. Highest number of cases were reported in June when the GHS embarked on targeted contact tracing which led to an increase in number of samples processed daily, peaking at over 7,000 samples daily. There were several issues to overcome including rapid consumption of reagents and consumables. Testing however continued successfully due to revised procedures, additional equipment and improved pipeline of laboratory supplies. Test results are now provided within 24 to 48 hours of sample submission enabling more effective response and containment. Conclusion: Following the identification of the first cases of SARS-CoV-2infection by the NMIMR, the Institute has trained other centres and supported the ramping up of molecular testing capacity in Ghana. This provides a blueprint to enable Ghana to mitigate further epidemics and pandemics. Funding: The laboratory work was supported with materials from the Ghana Health Service Ministry of Health, the US Naval Medical Research Unit #3, the World Health Organization, the Jack Ma Foundation and the University of Ghana Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research. Other research projects hosted by the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research contributed reagents and laboratory consumables. The funders had no role in the preparation of this manuscript.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Infection Control/methods , Population Surveillance , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , COVID-19/epidemiology , Contact Tracing/methods , Contact Tracing/statistics & numerical data , Ghana/epidemiology , Humans , National Health Programs , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
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