Ghana Health Service intensifies meningitis screening at Kumasi Academy

The Ghana Health Service has intensified processes to identify more cases of pneumococcal meningitis at Kumasi Academy and its environs after it discovered 26 cases of the disease at the school.

Autopsy reports of four students who died last month at the school reveal they died from the disease.

The deaths of the students caused public anxiety with parents and students demanding answers for the cause of the deaths.

Head of Disease Surveillance at the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Franklin Asiedu Bekoe, has advised that persons showing signs of fever and headaches must report to the nearest health facility immediately.

He adds that schools in the Ashanti Region should establish clinics on their premises to pick up early signs of some of these diseases.

Meningitis is an inflammation of the meninges, the covering of the brain and spinal cord.

It is mostly caused by virus, fungi and bacterium.

Outbreaks due to meningococcal meningitis remain a major public health challenge, particularly, the northern parts of the country.

Symptoms include neck pain and stiffness, convulsion, confusion, and vomiting.

Health authorities say because meningitis is endemic in Ghana, report of one case constitutes no outbreak, though enhanced surveillance is required to prevent spread.