Government is to begin a mandatory quarantine of all travelers arriving in Ghana from tonight, March 21, 2020, regardless of nationality.
“Everyone who comes into the country before Sunday will be mandatorily quarantined and tested for the virus,” President Nana Akufo-Addo disclosed in an address to the nation on Saturday evening.
Following restrictions from recent travel protocols, the only admissible travellers into Ghana were Ghanaians and foreign nationals with residence permits in Ghana.
These persons were to undergo a mandatory self-quarantine for 14-days.
The President also announced the closure of the country’s borders effective midnight on Sunday.
“All our borders; by land, sea and air, will be closed to human traffic for the next two weeks beginning midnight on Sunday,” he added in the address.
Ghana announced new travel protocols when seven cases were detected.
Travellers who had been to coronavirus-hit countries with cases exceeding 200 within the 14-days preceding their arrival, were to be barred from entering the country.
The admissible travellers who exhibit symptoms of the virus are to be quarantined and tested upon reaching Ghana.
The government said airlines had been instructed not to allow such persons into the country.
In general, the government said travel to Ghana was strongly discouraged until further notice.
Cases in Ghana
The novel Coronavirus cases in Ghana have increased to 21, with one death recorded on Saturday, March 21, 2020, involving a 61-year old Lebanese resident in Ghana.
The latest novel coronavirus (COVID-19) updates from the Ghana Health Service suggest that cases of community spread may have been detected.
One of the cases involves a 34-year-old woman who was a “contact of a confirmed case at her place of work,” according to the Ghana Health Service.
Another case involves a 29-year-old woman resident of Accra with no history of travel outside Ghana.
Also, a man, aged 53, who is a resident in Tema, who has no history of travel outside Ghana tested positive for the virus.
How is the virus spread?
The virus is spread mainly between people who are in close contact with one another, i.e within about 6 feet, and via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into one’s lungs.
To prevent the spread, the standard recommendations coming from the World Health Organisation and the Ghana Health Service are regular hand washing, covering one’s mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, thoroughly cooking meat and eggs and social distancing.
People are also advised to avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.