12 August 2014

Ghana: Stakeholders Meet On Cholera Ebola

press release

The Atebubu-Amantin district directorate of the Ghana Health Services has organized a stakeholders meeting on Cholera and Ebola.

According to the acting district director of health services, Mr Ahmed Ramseyer, the meeting was to share information and prepare against any eventuality especially when Atebubu is known to be cholera prone.

It identified indiscriminate and open defecation, contaminated wells, and improper designing of KVIP's as some of the factors fuelling cholera in the district the height of which was in 2012.

Mr Ahmed described cholera as an acute infection resulting in severe passage of frequent loose and watery stools that may cause collapse and death if not treated immediately.

He advised that: all fruits and vegetables be properly washed before consumption; cold foods avoided as much as possible whiles hand washing is made a regular practice before cooking, eating and after visiting the toilet.

The Ag DDHS cautioned against eating in dirty environments and admonished that all cases of profuse diarrhea be reported to the nearest health center immediately.

Whiles advising the use of oral rehydration salts as first aid for the treatment of cholera he stressed the importance of contacting health workers before preparing bodies of people who die from the disease for burial since it is very contagious.

Mr Ahmed also took the meeting through how Ebola spreads, signs and symptoms and what should be done to people suspected to be suffering from the disease.

He said Ebola is a viral disease that spreads very quickly from person to person and kills in a short time.

It is spread through direct contact with wounds and body fluids like blood, saliva, vomit, stool and urine of an infected person. It could also be contracted through the sharing of unsterilized objects like blades and needles, direct physical handling of persons who have died of the disease, eating of dead monkeys, chimpanzees and bats as well as the consumption of fruits partly eaten by infected animals.

He said Ebola usually starts with a sudden high fever and anyone of diarrhea, vomiting, body weakness, headache, sore throat, abdominal pain and skin rash. An affected person may also bleed from all parts of the body later.

Mr Ahmed advised that people with the above symptoms should report quickly to the nearest heath facility for attention whiles relations of people who die from the disease should contact relevant health personnel for the preparation and burial of the corpse.

Stakeholders drawn mainly from the, Information Services Department, National Commission on Civic Education, Ghana Education Service, Ministry of Food and Agriculture, the Game and Wildlife Department, Department for Social Welfare and Community Development and the local media identified education using various media channels as well as one on one advocacy as the best way of making the people aware of the two diseases in order forestall any outbreak.

Source: ISD (Daniel Oduro-Stewart)

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