Sierra Leone: The coordinator and chairman of the National COVID-19 Emergency Response Centre (NaCOVERC), Sheku F. Bangura, who doubles as the deputy minister two of Finance, has confirmed that Sierra Leone has bent the curve of the third wave of COVID-19. He said at the emergency press briefing yesterday 21st July 2021, in Freetown that, since the country confirmed the ‘Delta variant’ the numbers were increasing by day, prompting government restrictions and new measures.
The NaCOVERC Coordinator said between end of June to date, the country’s COVID figures are declining with a decreasing number of hospitalization and death, which according to him are indicative of bending the curve. He said the third wave of the disease started off with lots of measures including a surge, increased tests, and that, because measures were adhered to by members of the public, the country scientists are now confirming that the epidemiological curve has been flatten.
The deputy minister two of Finance revealed, as at last June, the country’s positivity rate was 10.2 percent this according to him, was way higher than the World Health Organization (WHO) positivity standard rate. He said based on proactive and additional measures by President Julius Maada Bio, the country positivity rate as at 17 July 2021, is now at 4.3 percent, indicating a decrease of 5.9 percent in less than a month.
Bangura said they are confident that as a team they have bent the curve and very confidence to maintain and flatten it but mentioned, the 28 days incidence rate and measures taken by the United Kingdom (UK), which has placed the country on the red zone countries. This he said was based on the UK’s decision to put the country on that list which according to him, is not reflective of the reality on the ground. He maintained, data collected by the CDC, and the John Hopkins are suggesting that Sierra Leone is not on the list of the UK Red Zone countries.
Pillar Leads for Surveillance Mohamed Vandi, described COVID-19 as a ‘protracted pandemic’ that every country has it own approach to contain it spread so he advised, for the country to resume normalcy by breaking the chain of transmission, it requires every national to be vaccinated. He said they were able to contain the disease based on experienced and the structures that were established during the fight against Ebola with supports from government and partners, in ensuring early warning signs were detected and handled.
Professor Sahr Moses Gevao, pillar lead for Labs and tests said their work is to determine through testing the presence and absence of COVID-19 in human beings, which according to him is done through collection of samples from alerts. He said they test those samples, conduct genomic tests in six of the functional laboratories using PCR gold standard tests, to perform the test within a turn around time of 48 hours.
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