The Office of the Dean of Students, in conjunction with the Directorate of University Health Services, has organised an orientation on COVID-19 protocols for final year students who have returned to campus to complete their studies.
The programme formed part of measures the University had instituted to prevent the spread of the virus following the directive of President, His Excellency, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for universities, and other educational institutions to re-open for final year students.
Measures and Protocols
Speaking at the function, the Head of Pharmacy at the University Health Service, Mr. Joseph A Kizzie-Hayford, in his presentation noted that the University had put in place some measures and protocols which staff and students must observe whilst on campus. He advised the students to follow the measures religiously in order to curtail the virus. He assured the students that the UCC COVID-19 Rapid Response Taskforce was available to attend to any suspected cases and, therefore, they should not hesitate to call the numbers when it became necessary to do so. “The taskforce is always on the alert to attend to any suspected cases so feel comfortable to call if you see any signs of the virus on your colleagues,” he indicated.
On the measures and protocols, he said the University had provided Veronica Buckets, soap, and tissue papers in front of lecture theatres, halls of residence, offices, libraries, offices, and other academic areas of the University. Mr. Kizzie-Hayford said it was mandatory for students to wear face masks before entering any facility on campus. “You are expected to wash your hands very well with running water and soap as well as wear face masks before you enter any facility on campus,” he advised.
Mr. Kizzie-Hayford noted the temperature of staff and students would be checked before entering the lecture halls, library, and halls of residence. He indicated that arrangements had been made to ensure that social distance was maintained at the lecture halls, library, and halls of residence.
Touching on COVID-19, Mr. Kizzie-Hayford said there were different ways the virus affected people, adding that most infected people will develop mild to moderate illness and would recover without hospitalisation. “80 percent of cases are asymptomatic or mild symptoms, 14 percent will require hospitalisation while five percent will be admitted at the intensive care unit and will need ventilators to support their breathing,” he explained.
He indicated that most of the common symptoms were fever, dry cough and tiredness, headache sore throat, and pains. However, he noted that some of the serious symptoms included difficulty in breathing or shortness of breath, chest pain or pressure, loss of speech, or movement. “On average it takes 2–14 days for symptoms of the virus to manifest itself,” he stated.Mr. Kizzie-Hayford pointed out that the World Health Organisation had indicated that there could be a possible transmission through “faecal-oral transmission”. He, therefore, entreated the students to close toilet lids when flushing.
The Head of Pharmacy advised the students to observe the protocols the University had put in place by washing their hands frequently with soap under running water. “Doing this will kill the viruses on your hands. You need to also stop touching your mouth, eyes, and nose” he counseled.
The Nurse Manager, Mr. Thomas Tamag, demonstrated healthy handwashing practices to the final year students. The two-day orientation was held co-currently at four venues; New Examination Centre, S. K. Adjepong Lecture Theatre, Main Auditorium, and Auditorium 900.