Government has indicated it will from tomorrow, Wednesday, April 8, 2020, take delivery of the first batch of locally produced nose masks as announced by the President.
According to government, five companies have been engaged by the Ministry of Trade and Industry to produce a total of 3.6 million masks which will be distributed across the country.
Speaking at a press briefing on COVID-19, the Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman Manu said they are expecting to receive all the masks in the next seven days.
“The President is making all efforts to resource the Ministry to ensure that we have adequate numbers of protective equipment. In his speech, he talked about taking the opportunity of the crisis to build local capacities to do some of these things at home. As I speak, the Minister of Trade has selected five [local firms] to sew 3.6 million nose masks. They will start delivery from tomorrow. We will take delivery of 150,000 each day and within the next seven days or so, the whole country will be flooded with these masks, especially for health workers.”
Need for local production
Government announced that it will begin the local production of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as a means to intensify measures aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19 in Ghana.
President Nana Akufo-Addo said this has become necessary because of the shortage of the already procured PPE which are essential for the protection of frontline health workers risking their lives every day to battle the virus.
In an address to the nation, President Akufo-Addo said the government has placed a high priority on the procurement of PPEs.
He added that the Ministry of Health was spearheading the distribution of the PPEs from the national level to the regional and district levels.
“This, notwithstanding, Government is aware that more needs to be done, especially in the face of the global shortage of PPEs. It is for this reason that Government is actively engaged with local manufacturing companies to assist them in the domestic production of PPEs, and I am encouraged by the response from the Ghanaian private sector. Domestic production of face masks, head covers, surgical scrubs and gowns will commence from [Tuesday].
Our Coronavirus case number
The total number of Coronavirus cases in Ghana has increased to 287.
This means that 73 more cases have been added to the country’s case count as at 6th April 2020, 23:30.
Total deaths and recovery remain at five and three respectively.
The rise in the number of cases follows measures of enhanced contact tracing and testing, the Ghana Health Service said.
Details of the latest additions were however not given.
So far, Greater Accra Region has most cases (256) followed by the Ashanti Region (18), Northern Region (10), Upper West Region (1), Eastern Region (1) and Upper East Region (1).