By Gistflash News
Aug 15, 2021
Dr Matshidiso Moeti, World Health Organisation (WHO) Regional Director for Africa, has said that the Ministry of Health of Cote d’Ivoire on Sunday confirmed the country’s first Ebola case since 1994.
Moeti advised that while pushing governments to concentrate on the COVID-19 response, they should also improve their preparedness for possible Ebola cases.
She said that the virus was confirmed in samples taken from a patient, who was hospitalized in the commercial metropolis of Abidjan, after coming from Guinea, according to the Institut Pasteur in Cote d’Ivoire.
Moeti said that the patient had traveled to Cote d’Ivoire by vehicle and arrived in Abidjan on August 12th, according to preliminary findings.
“After developing a fever, the patient was admitted to the hospital and is currently undergoing treatment.
“Guinea was hit by an Ebola outbreak that lasted four months and this was declared over on June 19, 2021. There is no evidence that the recent case in Cote d’Ivoire is connected to the Guinea outbreak,” she said.
According to her, further investigations and genome sequencing will be used to identify the strain and determine if the two outbreaks are linked.
She said that in 2021 Ebola outbreaks had been declared in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Guinea, but this is the first time since the 2014-2016 West Africa Ebola outbreak that an outbreak had occurred in a large capital city like Abidjan.
“It is of enormous concern that an outbreak has been declared in Abidjan, a metropolis of more than 4 million people,” Moeti said.
“However, most of the world’s expertise in combating Ebola is right here on the continent and Cote d’Ivoire may draw on this knowledge to speed up the response.
“The country is one of six that WHO recently aided in improving their Ebola preparedness, and this early diagnosis demonstrates that the preparation is paying off,’ she said
Moeti also said that WHO was assisting in the coordination of cross-border Ebola response activities and the 5000 Ebola vaccine doses that the organization helped secure to combat the outbreak in Guinea were now being transferred to Cote d’Ivoire, thanks to an agreement between the health ministries of the two countries.
“A plane is leaving Abidjan soon to gather vaccines that will be used to vaccinate those who are at high risk, including health workers, first responders and people who have been in contact with proven cases.
“WHO staff in Cote d’Ivoire are assisting with the case inquiry. A multidisciplinary team of WHO experts will also be quickly sent to the field, covering all key response areas,” she said.
Moeti also said the organisation would assist with increasing infection prevention and control at health institutions, diagnostics, contact tracing, treatment, and outreach to communities, to ensure that they played an important role in the response.
According to her, Cote d’Ivoire disclosed the epidemic in accordance with international health regulations and the organisation does not recommend any limitations on travel to or from the country.
“While governments focus on COVID-19, they should strengthen their preparedness for any Ebola cases,” she said.
Moeti noted that while Cote d’Ivoire borders Guinea and Liberia, both of which were hit severely by the West Africa Ebola outbreak in 2014–2016, the country has had no confirmed cases since 1994.
“Ebola is a deadly disease that affects humans and other primates. In previous outbreaks, case mortality rates have ranged from 25 per cent to 90 per cent.
“There is now good treatment available and patients’ chances of survival improves dramatically, if they receive treatment and supportive care early,” she said
FG converts National Blood Service to commission
By Gistflash News
Sept 25, 2021
The Federal Government has established the National Blood Service Commission (NBSC) to replace the National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS) to coordinate, regulate and ensure the provision of safe, quality blood transfusion services.
This is contained in a statement by Abdullahi Haruna, the commission’s Head of Media and Publicity on Saturday, in Abuja.
It explained that the NBTS was formerly a unit under the Department of Hospital Services in the Federal Ministry of Health, which was passed by the National Assembly and assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari.
It also disclosed that Dr Omale Joseph-Amedu, the National Coordinator, would serve as the Acting Director-General of the commission in line with the provisions of the Act establishing the commission.
“Commission which has the statutory mandate to coordinate, regulate and ensure the provision of safe, quality blood transfusion services on a country- wide basis within the national health plan.
“Therefore, the commission is legally mandated to ensure proper compliance with the National Blood Service Guidelines and standards.
“It will also maintain a system of quality assurance at all levels of service, encourage research in all aspects of blood transfusion services and promote the rational use of blood, blood products and alternatives to blood where appropriate.
“The commission which takes effect immediately as National Blood Service Commission (NBSC) has communicated that its new name and status more aptly reflects the mandate of ensuring the availability of safe, quality and adequate blood services to all Nigerians,” it stated
UK donates 1.2m COVID-19 vaccines to Nigeria – Envoy
By Gistflash News
Sept 25, 2021
COVID-19: 4, 680,000 Nigerians vaccinated – NPHCDA
By Gistflash News
Sept 25, 2021
The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) says 4,680,000 Nigerians have so far been vaccinated against COVID-19 .
The Executive Director /Chief Executive Officer of the agency, Dr Faisal Shuaib, disclosed this during the South South zonal town hall meeting on COVID-19 vaccination on Saturday in Benin.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the town hall meeting was organised by the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19, in collaboration with NPHCDA and the Edo government.
Shuaib noted that out of the 4,680,000 million vaccinated Nigerians, about 1,865,127 were fully vaccinated with the two doses.
He stated that the figure was below the nation’s target ,adding that the threats posed by the virus could prevent the country from returning to normal living.
“I will like to encourage us to use our good offices to encourage eligible members of our community to visit the nearest designated health facility to receive the vaccine.
“All the vaccines are currently available in designated vaccination sites across the country and are safe and effective,” he said.
According to him, in the course of the next few weeks, NPHCDA plans to gradually involve the private sector as sites for COVID-19 vaccination.
Shuaib, however, disclosed that the Federal Government had set up a Joint Task Force on COVID-19 vaccine for monitoring and accountability in collaboration with the security agencies.
Earlier, the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire said the town hall was organised to discuss COVID-19 vaccination, address mutual concerns and reach a consensus to ensure citizens were safe and protected against the deadly coronavirus.
Ehanire, said Nigeria had so far lost 2000 of her citizens to COVID-19, adding that the virus had also affected the nation’s GDP.
According to him ,the government needs to vaccinate 70 per cent of the population to effectively curb the spread of the virus.
“The way out off this is to get vaccinated because those who have taken the vaccine have full protection while the unvaccinated are exposed to danger,” he said
He disclosed that the Federal Government was working with the private sector for the production of vaccine in the country.
According to the minister, records have shown that over 90 per cent of deaths recorded from COVID-19 are from unvaccinated persons.
Also speaking, Gov. Godwin Obaseki said the state had so far vaccinated over 130,000 residents against the virus.
Represented by his Chief of Staff, Osaigbovo Iyokha, Obaseki said the state target was to vaccinate 60 per cent of the population.
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