The Takoradi Veterinary Laboratory says it is currently recording a high COVID-19 positivity rate ranging around 30% of samples tested daily.
The Supervisor of the laboratory, Dr. Simon Gbene in a Citi News report said the high positivity rate could be attributed to increased infections in air-conditioned environments.
“Currently, although the figures of daily samples are not as huge as they used to be, positivity is going up. For instance, an institution, which I cannot disclose its name due to patient confidentiality, brought us 75 samples and 22 were positive.”
“That is a huge positivity rate which is almost 30 per cent, and we have had cases like that where institutions want to test and the numbers are huge. One of the main reasons is because, in an air-conditioned environment, it really increases the infectivity rate,” he said.
Dr Gbene underscored that the high positivity rate currently being recorded in the region is in spite of the low number of samples the laboratory processes in a day as compared to some time in the past.
“If you look at the number of tests that we have carried out as Takoradi Veterinary Laboratory, we have so far tested around 10,000 samples. But currently, the figures are down simply because of the change of policy since we are only testing symptomatic cases that are reported to the hospitals and referred to us. If there are positives, then we look at their contacts.”
“However, we have a few walk-ins, and they are a few because normally people who walk-in are those who are travelling. Meanwhile, travellers prefer to go to Accra to have the test,” he stated.
Speaking on the issue of the new COVID-19 variant, Dr Gbene said the Takoradi Veterinary Laboratory currently lacks the capability to test for the new variant but relies on the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research for that test whenever they record a positive case.