The COVID-19 pandemic has had a telling impact on global air travel as various countries have instituted measures to promptly identify cases of the disease at airports and contain its importation.
Ghana, like most countries, closed international borders in March 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. But reopened to international flights 7 months later in September 2020. However, land and sea borders remain closed.
So, if you’re planning to travel to Ghana at this time of COVID-19, here is what you need to know.
Ghana’s COVID-19 testing requirements
The Ghana Health Service in collaboration with other partners is providing Port Health Services to ensure the safety of passengers and users of the airport.
Port Health Services at the airport include all health-related activities within the terminal including laboratory testing, an inspection of relevant health documents, screening and triaging of passengers and the management of ill persons including transfer to appropriate health facilities; environmental inspections, supervision of cleaning and disinfection of aircraft and the entire airport terminal among others.
All passengers are required to meet some health requirements prior to admission into Ghana and before departure.
- Passengers must possess a COVID – 19 negative Polymerise Chain Reaction (PCR) test from an accredited laboratory in the country of origin.
- The test should have been done not more than 72 hours before the scheduled departure time from the country of origin.
- Airlines who board passengers without PCR test results or transport and disembark passengers with Positive PCR test results into Accra will be fined US$3,500 per passenger. Non-Ghanaians may be refused entry and returned to the point of embarkation at a cost to the Airline. Ghanaians will be allowed entry but subject to 14 days of mandatory quarantine at a facility approved by the Government and at a cost to the passenger.
- Ghanaians residents who depart Ghana and return within one (1) week will not be required to present a COVID-19 result from the country of departure. They will, however, undergo mandatory COVID-19 testing upon arrival in Ghana.
- Persons who arrive under emergency circumstances such as diverted flights will not be required to undergo testing if they do not leave the airport or remain in transit such that they do not leave the hotel.
- You would be required to adhere to COVID-19 testing requirements for the destination countries.
Mandatory COVID-19 test
All passengers will be subjected to a mandatory COVID-19 test at the airport terminal and payment can be made online at https://myfrontierhealthcare.com/Home/Ghana. Any passenger who is unable to pay online will be required to make payment on arrival for the test.
The Ghana Airport Company in partnership with Frontier Healthcare Services Limited offers a 12-minute test result of COVID-19 for all arriving passengers at a cost of $150 except ECOWAS citizens who are to pay $50.
“This is FIA-Antigen Qualitative Test (Fluorescent Immunoassay), which detects whether there is an acute infection with the virus, and thus the risk of infecting other people they come in contact with.” The Director of Public Health at Ghana Health Service Dr Franklin Asiedu-Bokoe told GhanaFact.
As a departing passenger, you are allowed to take your antigen test at any of the Ghana Health Service certified laboratories for COVID-19 testing.“We have about 40 COVID testing centres so you can do it anywhere,” Dr Franklin Asiedu-Bekoe said.
But for arriving passengers, he stated that “it is only one centre,” and that is the Frontier Healthcare Service limited at the Kotoka International Airport.
COVID-19 country situation
Ghana recorded its first two COVID-19 cases on the 12th of March 2020.
The country has 99,974 total confirmed cases of the virus as of July 18, 2021, with 818 deaths recorded. According to the Ghana Health Service, 3,618 of the cases are active while 95,538 people have recovered.
Meanwhile, 405,971 people have been fully vaccinated, while a total of 865,422 persons are yet to receive their second dose.
By: Gifty Tracy Aminu