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Irregularities cited in US$150 coronavirus test at Kotoka Airport

The Herald, has landed reports from the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) in Accra, painting a bad picture about the US$150 per a person COVID-19 testing of travellers arriving in Ghana by the private company; Frontier Healthcare.The issues range from illegal operations, extortion, lack of staff, tax avoidance among others, some of which the policy research and advocacy group, IMANI Ghana, has in a statement issued yesterday, called for immediate steps to address.

Scientifically, The Herald’s sources disclosed how some people who have gone through the test have described it as ineffective. This was after they were declared positive of the virus at the Airport and sent to the Ga East Hospital for treatment, but within hours got declared negative by MDS-Lancet Laboratories, a privately-owned state of the art laboratory in Accra. This is after they have been declared negative at the country of origin ahead of their trip to Ghana.

What this means is that, passengers are spending additional money to correctly ascertain their COVID-19 status, after paying US$150, the equivalent of GH¢1, 600 to Frontier Healthcare, aside what had been paid to the countries they had travelled from to Ghana.

Financially, the US$150 slapped on passengers for the test, has been described as excessive by industry players, including an official of the Noguchi Memorial Institute of Medical Research, Dr. Kofi Bonney, who had noted that the $150 fee being borne by passengers, should have been “between $10 to about $20.”

But Aviation Minister, Joseph Kofi Addah, had described the charge as bearable, and insisted that the $150 charge, would not be reviewed.

However, administratively, many issues have bedevilled the ongoing test by Frontier Healthcare at the airport, according to IMANI.

They include lack of its own personnel, thus the use of staff of Noguchi, to no contract with the Noguchi staff, to operating illegally, as it has not been licensed by the Health Institutions & Facilities per Act of 2011 (Act 829).

Copied from:Ghana news

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