A stakeholders’ meeting to review a Cholera initiative by the Ghana Red Cross Society (GRCS) was held in Accra on Wednesday with a call on Ghanaians to adopt safe hygienic practices in combating the canker.
The programme trained a total of 120 volunteers of GRCS to respond to cholera emergency situations especially threats of outbreaks between April 2015 and July 2016 in the Greater Accra Region.
The volunteers were selected from some communities within the Accra metropolis to fight the disease in eight catchment areas namely Ga South Municipal, La Dade-Kotopon and Ledzokuku Municipal assemblies as well as Maamobi, Mamprobi, Adabraka Kaneshie and Achimota sub metros.
It was funded by the International Federation of Red Cross to primarily provide education on ways of enhancing community hygiene, hand washing activities, handling of dead bodies, food hygiene and treatment of waste as well as encouraging healthy lifestyle among Ghanaians.
Speaking to The Ghanaian Times at the review meeting,the National Secretary General of GRCS, Mr. Kofi Addo, implored the public to maintain proper sanitation and avoid practices that could trigger the outbreak of cholera.
He attributed the outbreak of the disease in 2014, which recorded over 2,500 cases and over 200 deaths to negligence of proper hygienic practices by some section of the public.
According to him, the disease could be permanently dealt with when stakeholders and the public step up precautionary measures and ensure that Accra was rid of filth.
The Regional Manager of Red Cross, Mr. Eric Asamoah, advised the public to observe proper ways of protecting their households against infectious diseases.
He emphasised on the need for people to thoroughly wash their hands before eating saying “the cholera is contracted mainly through contaminated hands and food therefore the best prevention is to constantly maintain clean and safe hands”.
According to him, people should endeavour to eat warm dishes in the rainy season while avoiding foods prepared at unhygienic environments.
Mr. Asamoah said though the country had made remarkable strides in the fight against the disease after its massive outbreak in 2014, there remained more to do to avoid a recurrence.
The National Health Programme Coordinator, Thomas Aapore, assured of the commitment of Red Cross to sustain the programme to effectively tackle the disease.
By Charles Amankwa