Ebola: Ghana to host ECOWAS meeting

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10411790_808656932478798_4144496762213192608_n-620x330Ghana is expected to host an extraordinary meeting of the ECOWAS Assembly of Health Ministers on the Ebola disease.

The special meeting which will take place in Accra on August 28, 2014,will be preceded by health experts meeting at the same venue.

A press statement issued by the Ministry of Health noted that “the overall objective of the Extraordinary meeting under the auspices of the West Africa Health Organization (WAHO) is to beef up implementation of strategies to contain the Ebola Virus disease outbreak in the ECOWAS sub-region.”

The meeting will among other things also support implementation of synchronized cross-border interventions and provide financial support to the four affected countries to strengthen preventive and control measures.

“The Ebola virus disease outbreak in West Africa, notably in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia and recently in Nigeria is a threat to regional and global public health safety as well as the economic and social security of the affected countries and therefore considered as one of the most frightening ever experienced since the outbreak of the disease more that forty years ago,”it further noted.

Below is the full statement from the Ministry of Health

SUBJECT: EXTRAORDINARY MEETING OF THE ECOWAS ASSEMBLY OF HEALTH MINISTERS ON EBOLA VIRUS DISEASE OUTBREAK

Ghana will host the extraordinary meeting of the ECOWAS Assembly of Health Ministers on the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak under the chairmanship of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, His Excellency John Dramani Mahama, President of the Republic of Ghana.

The special meeting of the Assembly of Health Ministers will take place at the Miklin Hotel, East Legon, and Accra on August 28, 2014, and it will be preceded by Health Experts meeting at the same venue on 26th and 27th August. This was contained in a press release

According to the ministry, the Ebola virus disease outbreak in West Africa, notably in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia and recently in Nigeria is a threat to regional and global public health safety as well as the economic and social security of the affected countries and therefore considered as one of the most frightening ever experienced since the outbreak of the disease more that forty years ago.

The overall objective of the Extraordinary meeting under the auspices of the West Africa Health Organization (WAHO) is to beef up implementation of strategies to contain the Ebola Virus disease outbreak in the ECOWAS sub-region.

It would be recalled that several inter-country meetings with various partners in attendance have been held        on the subject. Health authorities in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone have been brought together through regular cross-border meetings. An emergency ministerial meeting was convened on 2nd and 3rd July in Accra on the issue and that resulted in a communiqué with recommendations addressed to each stakeholder.

The Heads of State and Government of ECOWAS who met in Accra on the 10th and 11th of July, 2014 approved the recommendations proposed  ??by the Director General of the West African Health Organization (WAHO) regarding actions to be taken under this epidemic situation. These are, namely:

Support  implementation of synchronized cross-border interventions;

Provide financial support to the four affected countries to strengthen preventive and control measures, active surveillance of cases,  management of cases in specialized environments, multi-sectoral coordination / collaboration, beef up material and logistic capacities as well as social mobilization ;

Support neighboring countries and those at risk by strengthening epidemiological surveillance, conducting rapid assessments, social mobilization, training of personnel, etc.

In addition to that summit, a meeting was held in Conakry on July 20, 2014 with the Health Ministers of Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Côte d’Ivoire, still looking for the ways and means of implementing appropriate strategies to curb this epidemic.

Despite the progress made ??in the implementation of actions to prevent and contain the scourge, many challenges remain to curb the spread and containment of the epidemic.

Given this situation and acting on the instruction of the Chairman of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, H. E.  Mr. John Dramani Mahama, President of the Republic of Ghana, WAHO  has invited all ECOWAS Health Ministers and partners involved in the Ebola virus disease  control to an important and extraordinary meeting of the Assembly of Health Ministers on August 28, 2014  in Accra.

It is significant to note that the expected outcomes of the meeting will include update on Ebola outbreak in the ECOWAS sub- region; review of the implementation of recommendations from the various meetings held on the epidemic; identify difficulties at each level of the control of epidemic and identify as well as estimate appropriate strategies and resources needed to curb the epidemic.

Sgnd

DAN OSMAN MWIN

HEAD, PUBLIC RELTIONS UNIT

FOR: MINISTER OF HEALTH

ABOUT: Nana Kwesi Coomson

[email protected]

A Freelance Journalist, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist. Editor-in-Chief of www.233times.com. A contributory writer for Ghanaian Chronicle Newspaper. An alumnus of Adisadel College where he read General Arts. He holds first degree in Bachelor of Arts from the University of Ghana; Political Science (major) and History (minor). He has also pursued MSc Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Energy with Public Relations (PR) at the Robert Gordon University in the United Kingdom. His mentors are Rupert Murdoch, Warren Buffet, Sam Jonah, Kwaku Sakyi Addo and Piers Morgan

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