Short Report - Special Collection: COVID-19

Exploring the illness experiences amongst families living with 2019 coronavirus disease in Ghana: Three case reports

Nana K. Ayisi-Boateng, Dora Egblewogbe, Ruth Owusu-Antwi, Akye Essuman, Kathryn Spangenberg
African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine | Vol 12, No 1 | a2682 | DOI: | © 2020 Nana K. Ayisi-Boateng, Dora Egblewogbe, Ruth Owusu-Antwi, Akye Essuman, Kathryn Spangenberg | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 22 July 2020 | Published: 06 November 2020

About the author(s)

Nana K. Ayisi-Boateng, Department of Medicine, School of Medicine and Dentistry, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana
Dora Egblewogbe, Department of Polyclinic/Family Medicine Sub BMC, Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Accra, Ghana
Ruth Owusu-Antwi, Department of Psychiatry, Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Kumasi, Ghana
Akye Essuman, Family Medicine Unit, Community Health Department, University of Ghana Medical School, Accra, Ghana
Kathryn Spangenberg, Family Medicine Directorate, Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Kumasi, Ghana

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The 2019 corona virus disease (COVID-19) has wreaked havoc on countries, communities and households. Its effect on individuals and their families, although enormous, has not been adequately explored. We thus present a report on the illness experiences of three families in Ghana who had at least one member diagnosed with COVID-19. We interviewed them and recorded their commonest fears, such as death, stigmatisation and collapse of family business. Respondents had a fair idea about symptoms of COVID-19, mode of transmission and safety precautions. Family separation and loss of income were some of the adverse effects expressed. Majority of them were hopeful that family members with COVID-19 would recover and be reunited. The biopsychosocial impact of COVID-19 is tremendous and family physicians and other primary care workers have an essential role to play in addressing this.


biopsychosocial; COVID-19; family; Ghana; illness experience


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