President Ernest Bai Koroma on Monday 25th August made a conducted tour of health facilities meant for the containment of the deadly Ebola virus at Lakka, Connaught Hospital and the Emergency Hospital at Goderich, where he registered government's appreciation to health workers for the good work that they have been doing for the people of Sierra Leone.
Inspecting the newly installed mobile laboratory (the first in Freetown) for the testing of samples of suspected cases in the Western Area, the Laboratory Manager Dr Abdul Kamara briefed the President on blood samples that had been brought from the 34 Military Hospital for testing. With this development, the President believes it would enhance the fight against the Disease as this will lessen the burden of taking the samples to Kenema and Kailahun for testing.
At the Emergency hospital, he observed the high level of professionalism being manifested by the medical team, particularly at a period when the country is experiencing serious difficulties as a result of the Ebola epidemic, adding that the outbreak is posing serious challenges. “We must continue with this fight.” the President urged.
President Koroma lauded the support and service of the Emergency hospital in the fight against Ebola, whilst making reference to the scaling down of operations of private hospitals in the country.
He said government has received proposals from Emergency hospital and will provide the space required for the hospital to operate in the country as government is very pleased with the tremendous services the hospital is providing to the public.
President Koroma commended local and foreign medical staff, and reiterated government's preparedness to further provide the necessary support to enable the hospital operate in the country and continue to help the people.
On the partial functioning of Connaught Hospital and the shutdown of the Ola During Children's Hospital, President Koroma assured that all hospitals will soon be up and running, saying that there is enough provision for patients at isolation units, and disclosed that the government is in discussion with the Medical and Dental Association together with the College of Surgeons and the College of Physicians to come out with a position on the fight against Ebola.
Highlighting challenges faced by Emergency hospital, Coordinator Loca Rolla who led President Koroma and entourage on the well-guided tour of the hospital told the President that the closure of the Ola During Children's hospital has increased the admission of patients whilst appealing to President Koroma to help to reopen closed hospitals in the country especially in the Western Area.
Dr Mariam Turay reiterated the need to reopen closed hospitals and called for the disinfection of health facilities. She went on to state that patients at the isolation centres should be given adequate care. Dr Turay went further to encourage health workers to come together to win the fight against Ebola.
A foreign doctor at the Emergency hospital, Dr Michael Mawanda, encouraged government to scale up on contact tracing and surveillance measures in containing the spread of the virus