WHO Ghana Media Advisory Note on Novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak -24 February 2020
- The World Health Organisation (WHO) continues to support countries in their effort to significantly increase their readiness in this critical window and is sending surge staff to countries at highest risk of having a novel coronavirus case to support health authorities with coordinating preparedness efforts. As of Thursday 21 February 2020, 45 experts have arrived in 10 countries, with 20 more expert deployments being processed. Two experts are currently in Ghana.
WHO has identified 13 top priority countries, including Ghana, which due to their direct links or high volume of travel to China or their poor scores in International Health Regulations (IHR) core capacities, need to increase their preparedness measures. So far the WHO has dispatched personal protective equipment for health workers, as well as thermometers and other essential supplies for screening and handling suspect cases at airports and other points of entry. Shipments have been dispatched to 12 countries.
Global shortages of essential equipment like face masks have presented problems. While the top priority countries are WHO’s first areas of focus, the organization will support all countries in the region in preparing for novel coronavirus.
A release issued by the WHO Ghana office indicates that WHO is working with its networks of researchers and other experts to coordinate regional work on surveillance, epidemiology, modelling, diagnostics, clinical care and treatment, and other ways to identify, manage the disease and limit onward transmission. WHO has issued interim guidance for countries, which is regularly updated to take into account the current situation.