FDA begins testing, certification of home-made PPEs

The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has begun the process of testing locally produced nose masks to ensure they meet the required international standard.

The Authority in collaboration with the textiles department of the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) has already provided the requisite quality standard.

This forms part of home grown measures aimed at combating spread of the novel Coronavirus Disease (Covid-19) that is currently sweeping the world and having severe impact on all business activities.

According to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the FDA, Delese Mimi Darko, her outfit is committed to ensure that only the nose masks of the required quality standards are used in Ghana..

“The first few that were manufactured were tested to make sure they meet European and British standards that Ghana has adopted.

“The FDA laboratory will continue to test all nose masks and PPEs. It is our mandate and goal to ensure that we have the right PPEs for the right risk levels”, she said.

This comes as a great relief to the public in general and front line health workers in particular as some reports indicate that there are some substandard nose masks being sold locally. This mirrors the situation with regards to alcohol-based hand sanitizers which medical experts advise should be used regularly; lots of sub-standard products have been introduced into the market that are not endorsed by the FDA and indeed offer no real protection to users.

Government has been at pains to ensure a similar situation does not evolve with regards to PPEs which are of even more importance and indeed are absolutely crucial for the safety of front line medical workers.

Some frontline health workers in the country involved in the fight against the pandemic have recently been complaining about not having enough access of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as nose masks.

The move by the FDA implies that health workers and the public at large can be assured of the availability of nose masks that are of the required standard.

Early this month, Director General of Ghana Health Service (GHS), Dr. Patrick Aboagye revealed that Ghana has started local production of nose masks as part of effective efforts to curtail the coronavirus.

Local production of PPEs

Local production of PPEs has already commenced in the country as four local companies have been selected to produce the kits for the frontline health workers leading the fight against the Coronavirus pandemic.

They are to produce among other things, face masks, medical scrubs, hospital gowns and headgears using fabrics from Akosombo Textiles Limited (ATL), Volta Star Textiles and Ghana Textile Printing Company Ltd (GTP).