Dr Kofi Bonny of the Noguchi Medical Institute, Monday said prompt medical care was essential to improving the rate of survival of victims of the deadly Ebola virus because one could recover with the appropriate medical care.
He also advised the public to use hand sanitizers which has the label ‘anti-viral disease’ since its capable of fighting viral infections and advised the public to wash their hands regularly with soap under running water. They should also report any suspected case immediately to the nearest health centre.
Dr Bonny gave the advice at a one-day training workshop organised by the African Media and Malaria Research Network (AMMREN-plus) in Accra.
He said about 80 suspected cases of Ebola have been investigated in Ghana, but all proved negative, adding that, the disease kills up to 50-90 per cent of its victims, causing fear and panic in the communities where the infected people live.
He said this year’s Ebola virus outbreak has recorded the biggest and most complex in history, adding that, the virus has five different species; Bundibugyo, Reston, Sudan, Tai Forest and Zaire Ebola virus.
As at August 28, 2014, records showed that, out of a total of 3,706 cases in all four Ebola captured countries, representing 50 per cent, Guinea recorded 771 cases with 424 deaths, Liberia had 1,698 cases with 871 deaths, Sierra Leone, 1,216, cases, 476 deaths and Nigeria 21 cases with seven deaths, he noted.
He called on the media to educate people on how to prevent and fight the disease in both rural and urban communities in the country so that people are not misinformed, leading to unnecessary fear and panic.
Mrs Ellen Sam, a Clinical Pharmacist, who spoke on the topic; ‘Lifestyle diseases, an emerging epidemic’, classified hypertension, type two diabetes, obesity, some cancers, liver cirrhosis, asthma, chronic respiratory conditions, anxiety disorders, depression and atherosclerosis, as some of the diseases that resulted from the way people lead their lives on daily basis.
She called for lifestyle changes, by avoiding some foods and having regular exercises, as well as indulging in healthy lifestyle choices, adding that, the media should prevent the publication of some advertisements that promote certain food items which cause diseases.
Mrs Charity Binka, Executive Secretary of AMMREN said the Network initiated AMMREN-Plus in order to maintain its original focus of building the capacity of African journalist to effectively interpret scientific data while extending its work to other health and development issues.
Mrs Ernestina Agyepong of the Ghana Nutrition Association, who spoke on the topic; ‘Nutrition as a key to Health’ said anaemia was a problem among children, noting that, 28 per cent of children in Ghana were too short for their ages due to chronic hunger and appealed to parents to feed their children with nutritious food. GNA