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Foolproof Measures Needed To Deal With Ebola Outbreak — GMA   
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The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has called on the Ghana Health Service to put in place pragmatic and foolproof measures to deal with any possible case of the Ebola virus.

According to the GMA, it was gravely concerned about the recent outbreak of Ebola in some neighbouring countries in the sub-region.

But what was more worrying, it said, was that the health system in Ghana did not appear to be ready in terms of logistics and practical measures to deal with the deadly virus, especially at the facility level.

“The Ministry of Health should put in place practical measures, such as setting up proper isolation centres across the country, providing appropriate personal protective equipment, large-scale public education on preventive measures and early identification of cases, among other interventions,” it said.

The call was made at a press conference addressed by the President of the GMA, Dr Kwabena Opoku Adusei, at the end of the 3rd National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the association at Prampram yesterday.

National response

“The much talked-about ‘National Response’ to Ebola must be made public and practical to help workers,” Dr Adusei said.

The GMA, he said, was mindful of the fact that health personnel were mostly at risk when such diseases broke out in a country, adding that providers must have a high index of suspicion when dealing with patients with haemorrhagic fevers.

The association also called on regional and district directors of health services to ensure that doctors and all health personnel practised effective barrier-nursing and took the necessary precautions when handling suspected cases of Ebola in their facilities.

“The management of various hospitals should put plans in place for isolation wards to be created in the facilities in the event that any suspected individual finds himself or herself in their facilities, in order not to endanger other patients and staff in their hospitals,” it advised.

Meanwhile, Dr Adusei said the GMA was in the process of putting together some education materials on cholera and Ebola to educate the public.

Need for precaution

It also advised the public to take precaution when handling sick individuals with fever and bleeding tendencies and also quickly report to hospital when any relative who had visited any of the countries with Ebola outbreak, such as Guinea, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Liberia, falls sick.

In a related development, the GMA has bemoaned the regular outbreak of cholera in the country, describing it as a major perennial health disaster linked to insanitary conditions and poor water supply systems.

“The regular outbreak of this disease in the country shows clearly that, as a country, enough is not being done to deal with the issue of sanitation,” it said.

Practise good hygiene

The association entreated the public to practise good hygiene in order not to be affected and also called on health workers and institutions to improve their preparedness levels to manage individuals with the condition in their facilities.

“The various metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies should put effective mechanisms in place to deal with improper sanitary practices in their jurisdictions to stem the spread of the disease,” it urged.
Source: Daily Graphic

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