Public Health Analyst, Dr. Kwame Sarpong Asiedu has dismissed calls by the Minority for a full scrapping of Covid-19 tests at the Kotoka International Airport (KIA).
Speaking on Newsnight, Wednesday, Dr. Sarpong explained that the country’s Covid-19 figures do not support full scrapping of the tests at KIA.
Referencing countries cited by the Minority to back their calls, Dr. Sarpong noted that such countries have attained the herd immunity threshold thus, they can allow the scrapping of Covid-19 tests at their airports.
“The UK has 88% of its population having two jabs and 67% having three jabs. So the UK has scrapped to the point that whether you have not vaccinated or not, you don’t need anything to come in because they are around the herd immunity threshold and with infections, one thing you cannot do is to constrain human beings simply because they could get infected. The minute the link between hospitalisation and death is broken due to infections there is no reason why you can constrain them and that’s why the UK has done it. Ghana doesn’t have that luxury,” he stated.
However, the Public Health Analyst opined that some Covid-19 testing at the airports have outlived its usefulness and must be scrapped.
He noted that persons who have had their vaccine dose in the last six months do not need any form of testing as it’s being done in the country.
“The data after close to 12 billion doses of vaccination points to the fact that you do not need a PCR test for a fully vaccinated person who had their last dose in the last six months to come into your country. Such a person when they get to your point of entry doesn’t need a complimentary test that is why the UK has scrapped it, Israel has done it and a number of European Union countries are doing it,” he added.
According to him, the purpose of the testing is to limit the spread of the virus and so it is not logical for the testing to be done on persons entering the country who have been vaccinated and have less likelihood of spreading the virus particularly when the positivity rate at the airport is about 0.9%.
Dr. Sarpong, therefore, called for a scrapping of this aspect of the testing of fully vaccinated persons and rather focus on unvaccinated persons or partially vaccinated persons.
This, he said would ensure efficiency in testing and also reduce the cost of travel into the country.