Accra, 4 July, 2014 – Health Ministers at the just ended 2-day meeting on the Ebola Virus Disease have called for an immediate action to curb the disease which they agreed poses a serious threat to all countries in the region and beyond.
In a press release issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO), the meeting developed an inter-country strategy requiring the establishment by the WHO of a Sub-Regional Control Center in Guinea to act as a coordinating platform to consolidate and harmonize the technical support to West African countries by all major partners; and assist in resource mobilization. The delegates also underscored the importance of WHO leading an international effort to promote research on Ebola virus disease and other hemorrhagic fevers.
Highlights of the strategy include:
- Convening national inter-sectoral meetings involving key government ministries, national technical committees and other stakeholders to map out a plan for immediate implementation of the strategy.
- Mobilising community, religious, political leaders to improve awareness, and the understanding of the disease
- Strengthening surveillance, case finding reporting and contact tracing
- Deploying additional national human resources with the relevant qualifications to key hot spots.
- Identifying and committing additional domestic financial resources
- Organise cross-border consultations to facilitate exchange of information
- Working and sharing experiences with countries that have previously managed Ebola outbreaks in the spirit of south-south cooperation
The current Ebola outbreak is reportedly the highest recorded in terms of cases, deaths and geographic spread across Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. This necessitated the Ministerial meeting in Accra to discuss ways to contain the disease and bring it to an end.