Ebola Scare Hits Eastern Region

Antwi Boasiako Sekyere addressing the meeting and flanked by his deputy, Mavis Frimpong and other members of the committee

The Eastern Region has been put on high alert for ebola following the arrival of six travellers from Guinea Bissau who were struck with fever and were rushed to the Begoro holy Family hospital and the eastern Regional hospital last week.

Residents particularly in Koforidua and neighboring towns were thrown into panic mode with speculations that the travellers had contracted the dreaded Ebola virus disease (EVD).

However, the Eastern Regional Health Director, Dr Mrs Charity Sarpong, has assured the region and the entire public that all suspected cases of Ebola in the region have proved negative to the virus.

She said the test results released by the Noguchi Memorial Research Centre (the only Ebola test centre in the country) confirmed that the Ebola suspects from the Eastern Region were free from the infection.

She was speaking at the Emergency Epidemic Management Dissemination Committee Meeting held at Koforidua in the course of last week.

She called on the media to help in educating the public on the disease and its associated dangers. She said there is no mainstay treatment for the virus ‘but abiding by simple hygienic practices is the sure way to prevent infection.’

Dr Mrs Sarpong urged the Ghana Education Service (GES) to help by ensuring that school authorities make available either running tap or Victoria buckets in their schools to ensure regular hand washing by students and staff.

The Eastern Regional Minister, Antwi Boasiako Sekyere, on his part called on all government installations and sensitive public places to make available running water and other resources like soap to ensure regular hand washing.

Mr Boasiako Sekyere pleaded with the media outlets especially radio and TV stations to help in the education programme by allocating five minutes of air time to discussing the dreaded Ebola virus daily.

He was happy that the disease has not yet been recorded in the country and prayed to all stakeholders to pool their strength and resources together to ensure Ebola ‘does not find its way into Ghana.’

About 1200 cases have been recorded and more than 56 percent have died since the outbreak of the disease in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea Bissau.

FROM Rocklin Antonio, Koforidua 

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