Freetown, Dec. 22, 2015 (MOHS) – The Ministry of Health and Sanitation and the National Ebola Response Centre (NERC) has concluded a two-day Transition Confirmation Workshop for District Health Management Teams taking over from District Ebola Response Centre (DERC) at the Wusum Hotel, in Makeni.
Funded by DFID, the workshop attracted District Medical Officers, NERC District Coordinators, Office of National Security and Ministry of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs.
Addressing the opening ceremony, the Deputy Minister of Health and Sanitation 1, Foday Sawi Lahai described the event as a very important milestone in the entire Ebola transition process.
He recalled October- November 2014 when the Ebola pandemic was devastating the country, putting it down and under, committing the President in his wisdom to establish the National Ebola Response Centre (NERC), and working in close collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Sanitation and partners in the fight against the Ebola Virus Disease.
Mr. Sawi reminded his audience that judging from available evidence, the Ebola is not completely over, adding that history has shown that Ebola has the tendency of returning or showing up in a country where it has existed, and called for resilience and sustainable zero infection.
The Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Brima Kargbo giving the objective of the workshop said the role of Ministry of Health and Sanitation is to ensure an effective, functional health care delivery system that is accessible and affordable to the people.
He said the Ministry also has the responsibility to ensure that the country is free from any infectious diseases and to ensure that they improve the health outcomes of the people of the country.
Dr. Kargbo reiterated that the workshop aimed at enabling District Medical Officers to have a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities ahead of the transition with a view to working with the District Ebola Response Centre in identifying the critical areas and gaps in the current transition plan.
Dilating on the workshop background, the Director of Situation Room, NERC, Omaru Badara Sisay spoke on the partial and full transitions, disclosing that Phase one focuses on the operational control of the assets and Phase two, the transfer of assets to the Ministries of Health, Social Welfare Gender and Children’s Affairs and Office of National Security.
Other highlights of the workshop include presentations on the overview of the key activities of heightened surveillance, resilient zero, and responding to an EVD event by James Akpablie, introduction of transition guiding document by Nick Helton, group work, discussions, suggestions, transition timetable, and next steps formed high point of the workshop.