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Action contre la Faim (ACF) in Sierra Leone is continuing supporting the Ministry of Health and Sanitation (MoHS) in the fight against Ebola at national and district level, in Moyamba and Freetown-Western Area, with the support of the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA).
The national state of emergency was declared by President DR. ERNEST BAI KOROMA on July 31st. As of July 30, the MoHS has reported 500 confirmed cases and 167 confirmed deaths. At the moment 12 out of 14 districts in the country are regarded as affected including the two districts of Freetown and Moyamba where ACF currently operates in .
Since the beginning of the outbreak in West Africa, ACF Sierra Leone has been supporting the MoHS in developing key messages and communication material to raise awareness on the signs and symptoms of the virus in the communities and with the health staff. Starting from May, ACF was actively involved in the Ebola response integrating Ebola sensitization activities in the daily programme activities. So far in the 2 Districts ACF has reached almost 30,000 people during community sensitization activities and addressing at risk groups in markets, lorry parks, schools, churches, mosques, etc.. Non-medical staff in the hospital in Moyamba was also trained to avoid further spreading of the virus disease. In addition, with the support of SIDA, ACF has already trained more than 1,000 Community Health Workers and more than 400 health staff on how to detect and refer suspected Ebola patients. All the activities that ACF is currently implementing are conducted in close collaboration with the District Health Management Teams (DHMT)and the MoHS at national level to ensure that activities are coordinated and that the needs of the most at risk are addressed.
Aside of the Ebola response ACF Sierra Leone is continuing implementing the programmes’ activities in nutrition, food security and WaSH. However, respecting the decision of President DR. ERNEST BAI KOROMA, ACF Sierra Leone has decided to suspend the activities planned for the celebration of the World Breastfeeding Week 2014 (1-7 August).
Info on Ebola
Ebola virus disease is a severe, often fatal illness, with a death rate of up to 90%. Ebola first appeared in 1976 in the Democratic Republic of Congo and in Sudan. The origin of the virus is unknown. The disease can be transmitted human-human through body fluids and it has an incubation period between 2 and 21 days. Initial symptoms are fever, muscle pains, vomit and diarrhoea that can evolve including internal and external bleeding.
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