ARE WE PREPARED FOR EBOLA OUTBREAK?

The fire fighting method of handling EBOLA in many countries has given rise to alarm as the cases are counted one by one. This leads to general information given to the public regarding what is to be done, but not much is said about medical employees who deal with illnesses. In the media one sees health workers putting on protection suits covering all parts of the body. Suspected cases are put under quarantine and only medical personnel who are fully protected are allowed to come into contact with them and the special wards where they are admitted are fully disinfected.

Our fear is that if medical workers are asked to take care of suspected cases without protective clothing they are likely to neglect such patients. The first task of any government is to prepare its health facilities and personnel to handle suspected cases. Foroyaa would like to see demonstration of preparedness by dramatising cases being handled by health personnel.

Secondly, every outbreak of such illnesses could be traced to an epicentre. Once this epicentre is traced, the movements of people in and out of the area could be properly monitored and preventive measures taken to reduce the spread of the illnesses.

Lastly there is need for general public awareness of the symptoms and where to report in case of suspicion of outbreak. The mode of transmission should also be known to promote preventive habits.