Ebola Watch Ghana, a non-governmental organization spearheading public education and awareness on the deadly Ebola Virus Disease in Ghana has engaged residents of the Liberia refugee camp at Budumburam in a day’s Anti-Ebola Strategic Health Development Training Workshop under the theme “Ebola, The Role of the Liberian Community in Ghana”.
The workshop was organized by Youth Empowerment for Progress (YEP) last Friday.
Kobby Blay, team leader for Ebola Watch Ghana noted that the Ebola Virus Disease in spite of its 50% – 90% fatality rate was preventable if the requisite health safety tips were adhered to, contrary to some perceptions that suggested otherwise.
According to him, the collective effort of all stakeholders was necessary to put an end to the spread of the disease, noting that an outbreak anywhere was a threat everywhere.
Kobby Blay said Ebola is spread from person to person through direct contact with body fluids (blood, saliva, mucus, vomit, urine, or feces) from an infected person alive or dead.
He urged residents of the camp to report to the nearest health facility with symptoms such as fever, headache, diarrhea, vomiting and fatigue for immediate medical attention as they may be symptoms of Ebola adding that false alarm and expression of extreme fear of the disease were huge impediments to curtailing the outbreak.
A matron at the St. Gregory Catholic Hospital in the Budumburam Camp, Mad. Ernestina Manu urged residents of the camp to report friends and family who arrive from Liberia or other Ebola affected countries to a health facility for testing, monitoring and contact tracing.
She said, it takes between 2 to 21 days for symptoms of Ebola to fully manifest hence the need for residents to heed to the various personal hygiene measures that include regular and proper hand washing as often as possible.
Mad. Ernestina Manu added that residents must desist from reporting persons who arrive from Liberia or suspected Ebola cases to the police saying Ebola was health related and not crime.
She further charged participants of the workshop to relay the information gathered to their families and friends in order to increase awareness on the deadly viral disease in the Budumburam community.
Meanwhile, residents of the Budumburam refugee camp are worried over the growing stigma against them by their Ghanaian counterparts in the wake of the Ebola outbreak that has devastated their country. In an interview with Ghana Health Nest, some said their movements have been curtailed due to constant reference to be them by some Ghanaians as ‘Ebola carriers’.The Liberians are therefore calling for more public education on the disease to reduce the level of stigma they face.
Ebola Watch is an initiative of Ghana Health Nest (GHN). The program was supported by Ebola Ghana Alert and Steven Jones & friends, USA.
Source: Jonas Nyabor