WUHAN, CHINA - FEBRUARY 03: (CHINA OUT) A man cross an empty highway road on February 3, 2020 in Wuhan, Hubei province, China. The number of those who have died from the Wuhan coronavirus, known as 2019-nCoV, in China climbed to 361 and cases have been reported in other countries including the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan, South Korea, India, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, and several others. (Photo by Getty Images)

A Research Scientist at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) Department of Medical Diagnostic, disagrees with Ghana Medical Association’s (GMA) call for a national lockdown amidst the coronavirus outbreak.

Dr Michael Owusu suggests that government should rather identify the epicenters in the country and implement the lockdown instead of nationwide lockdown.

He said on Joy FM’s NewsNite programme on Wednesday that “We [Ghana] have collected a lot of data from the contact tracing, we have information about the people who have the disease and where they have been.

“So with this information, we can mark these places out, liaise with the telecommunication companies to get the nearest coordinate of all these people.  Then we can target size within Accra or size within Kumasi you can implement the policy,” he recommended.

This comes after the GMA called on President Akufo-Addo to place the country on lockdown with immediate effect.

The GMA in a letter explained that declaring lockdown will “save our nation from the devastating effects of this pandemic.”

But Dr Owusu argues that a nationwide lockdown will adversely affect livelihoods of Ghanaians particularly, the people in the informal sector.

The Research Scientist further indicated that a hastened lockdown cannot predict how long the lockdown will last and how successful it will be.

“Perhaps the time you open up, that will be the time people will start exhibiting the symptoms of the virus.

“However, based on data gathered, you can be able to target specific places and lock these places, for perhaps 21-days [and] do mass testing to ensure they are negative and then move on to another place.”