Guinea Extends Ebola Ring Vaccine Trial to Sierra Leone

Freetown, Aug. 24, 2015 (MOHS) – The Guinean Ebola Ring Vaccine Trial has been extended to Sierra Leone as a move to stop the transmission across the region.

guineaChief Medical Officer, Dr. Brima Kargbo in group with the Vaccine Trial Team and participants

Addressing participants in the opening ceremony of the training session at the Brookfields Hotel Conference Hall in Freetown, the WHO Ebola Technical Coordinator Sierra Leone, Dr. Margaret Lamumu said prior to the extension of the vaccine to Sierra Leone the Ministry of Health and Sanitation and WHO Joint Team visited five sites to make available the vaccine study, adding that expert trainers from the UK were targeted to do the training.

guinea1Dr. Margaret Lamumu

She told her audience that even when Sierra Leone gets to Ebola free the country still stands the risk of getting to be declared Ebola free and admonished participants to show commitment during the training.

The Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Brima Kargbo said the use of the vaccine would help break the chain of transmission, stressing the need to work collectively as a team to control the spread of the disease.

guinea2Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Brima Kargbo

He noted that with the presence of the disease, Sierra Leone is still a worried nation and that if the disease is not contained in the three countries: Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone the fight still continues to making the region free.

Dr. Kargbo disclosed that a huge number of compatriots lost their lives during the height of the crisis of the outbreak, and positioned surveillance, community engagement and community ownership as one of the Ministry’s Post Recovery Strategy in meeting the challenges ahead.

Focal Lead of the Vaccine Trial, Dr. James Russell spoke about the efficacy and safety of the vaccine, adding that it is basically not for the general populace but targeting contact of an infected person with a complex protocol for Ebola patient in the community. This he said will avert spread and transmission. The acceptance and extension of the trial in Sierra Leone, by the Government he said shows commitment to end the disease in the country and extremely important for the Repaid Response Team.

guinea3

Focal Lead of the Vaccine Trial, Dr. James Russell

The WHO Country Representative Dr. Anders Nordstrom reiterated the safety of the disease, its efficacy and underscored the importance of Research Trial in Guinea that has been extended to Sierra Leone.

guinea4WHO Country Representative Dr. Anders Nordstrom

The training he said is a high quality initiative that demonstrates what the world can do and implored participants to show commitment.

JAK/KK/MOHS/SLENA