Use Ebola Experience to Halt Covid-19 in West Africa - Experts

Sierra Leone's President Julius Maada Bio has reimposed a nationwide curfew as part of new measures aimed at curbing rising Covid-19 cases. The president also announced that funerals, weddings and all other social events will have a maximum of 50 people attending.

The country is grappling with a third wave, which the government says has seen both infections and fatalities rise exponentially.

The 2014-2016 Ebola outbreak in Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Nigeria taught that there is no substitute for political leadership and strategic management in any outbreak response. Liberia has been down this road before and has gained the knowledge and skills to manage epidemics.

By establishing the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL) and the emergency operation centres in all 15 counties, as well as training field epidemiologists for community-based events surveillance, the government resolved to build a more resilient health system, capable of responding to public health emergencies such as Covid-19.

That system, plus the over 2,000 personnel trained in various aspects of public health during and after the 2014 Ebola epidemic, should be mobilised writes Sara Beysolow Nyanti, Tolbert Nyenswah Dougbeh, Chris Nyan and Mardia Stone for The New Dawn.

As at July 6, 2021, Liberia has 4918 Covid-19 cases, with 2464 recoveries and 134 deaths.

InFocus

Coolers containing AstraZeneca and Sinopharm vaccines (file photo).

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