Sierra Leone: The Ministry of Health and Sanitation (MoHS) through the Directorate of Health Security and Emergencies (DHSE) has on Wednesday 7th April 2021 launched the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Preparedness and Contingency Response Plan at the Emergency Operation Centre (EOC), Wilkinson Road.
The launch was chaired by the Chief Medical Officer, Dr T.T. Samba, followed by a short statement from the Director of the Directorate of Health, Security and Emergencies, Dr Mohamed A. Vandi.
A presentation of the outline of the plan was made by the EVD Incident Manager, Dr Alie H. Wurie, who said WHO and the countries have developed a strategic regional plan for nine countries including two phases of priority actions.
Phase I aims to be implemented in the next three months to enhance the capacities for the countries to be operationally ready to respond should there be any importation of EVD cases, while the Phase II of the plan is to scale up the preparedness actions to ensure sustainability of the operational readiness capacities linking to the on-going longer term emergency preparedness, he said.
Dr Wurie clarified that operational readiness takes place in a broader context of emergency preparedness and therefore also responds to the needs of countries to build sustainable capacities to manage outbreaks including from the Ebola Viral Disease and other health emergencies.
Overall, he said the entire purpose of the WHO Regional Strategic Plan is to ensure that the countries are prepared and ready to implement timely and effective risk mitigation, detection and response measures should there be any importation of EVD cases.
“Investing in preparedness and operational readiness is imperative as this will generate momentum towards the commitments the countries have made towards longer term emergency preparedness and implementation of IHR core capacities,” he added. Statements were also made by key stakeholders, partners, donors and embassies.
The plan was officially launched by the Minister of Health and Sanitation, Dr Austin Demby, after making a brief statement on the pro-activeness of the ministry and its health partners.
The development of the EVD readiness plan is to protect the population of Sierra Leone from potential EVD outbreaks that may extend from the on-going EVD outbreak in Guinea. Also, in a case where there is any confirmation, the system will be able to contain the virus and break any possible community transmission.
By [email protected]