‘Don’t panic; flu cases in 3 schools under control’ – Ghana Health Service

‘Don’t panic; flu cases in 3 schools under control’ – Ghana Health Service
Dr. Anthony Nsiah-Asare - Director General of the Ghana Health Service

The Ghana Health Service has said the recently reported cases of an outbreak of flu has been brought under control in schools and surrounding areas where the spread of the disease was rife.

According to the service, a team of experts was dispatched to the affected schools, first of all, to verify and ascertain the cause of the flu, adding that their test confirmed what is known as the seasonal flu Type-A H3N2 which is responding well to the current treatment regimen for flu management by the health service.

The schools are Krobo Girls’ SHS, Legacy Girls College, and the Akuse Methodist Senior Technical School.

A statement from the Health Service indicated that the students in the affected schools were subsequently treated and taken through basic hygienic practices to prevent a re-occurrence of the flu and a subsequent outbreak.

“The Ghana Health Service (GHS) received a report of unusually high number of suspected flu cases in three (3) secondary schools (Akuse Methodist Secondary School, Krobo Girls Secondary School and Legacy School (Private)) in Lower-Manya-Krobo District of Eastern Region on Thursday 31st October, 2019.”

“Consequently, teams of experts from the National and Regional Levels were dispatched to support the affected Districts, to verify and assess the situation and provide response actions as appropriate.
The teams have met with the respective school authorities and took samples from affected students for laboratory testing. The test confirmed seasonal flu Type-A H3N2 which responds well to current treatment regimen for flu management.”

“The affected students were given the needed medication and told to stick to common hygienic practices such as: Washing of hands with soap under running water and  observing common cough etiquette such as covering your mouth with a handkerchief before you cough or sneeze to prevent further spread.”

The statement added that students as of today [Sunday 3rd November 2019] are responding well to treatment and normalcy has returned back to the various schools.

“All the affected students have responded well to treatment and are doing very well as at today, Sunday 3rd November, 2019 and normalcy has been restored to the school, students are going about their daily routines.”

The Ghana Health Service also called on parents and guardians who have their wards in the respective schools to desist from panicking but rather advise their wards to “cooperate with the health and school authorities, practice and enhance personal hygiene and cough etiquette.”

It further assured the public of their continuous monitoring of the situation adding that regular updates would be provided.

“At this point, we wish to indicate that, the situation is under control and encourage parents not to panic, but rather advise their wards to cooperate with the health and school authorities, practice and enhance personal hygiene and cough etiquette as suggested by the health teams.”

The Ministry of Health / Ghana Health Service will continue to monitor the situation very closely, do best to contain it and provide updates to the general public as appropriate.

Influenza A3 is a variant of the influenza virus, also known as the “seasonal flu”.

It contains strains of influenza of avian and human varieties and is responsible for several high profile epidemics.

Also, it is transmitted in much the same way that other similar influenza variants are transmitted.

Particles from an infected person can be encountered through physical contact, airborne particles, or contact with surfaces and objects that have become infected.

Symptoms do not differ greatly from other strains of the influenza virus and include fever, body and joint ache, fatigue, dry cough, runny nose and sore throat.