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Regional health body seeks more funding to curb outbreaks

20 November 2014, 08:04Augustine Osayande

Abuja - The Chief Executive of the West African Health Organisation (WAHO), Dr Xavier Crespin, has advocated for an annual allocation of at least $2,5 million to the institution to strengthen its capacity to fight epidemics.

The Directorate of Communication at the headquarters of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in Abuja made the request.

According to a statement, Crespin said such additional resources would improve the capacity of the organisation to cope with such outbreaks.

He said WAHO as the regional institution has responded vigorously to the unprecedented outbreak by “speedily providing the affected countries with the support needed to confront the epidemic.”

He added that the overall objective of the response by the ECOWAS Commission and WAHO was to reduce the number of mortality through early detection, adequate response and building the capacity of member states.

Also Read: AU, Ecowas welcome new Burkina Faso leader

“WAHO and the Commission are working towards strengthening preventive and surveillance measures within the Community at the borders; raising awareness, informing, and educating the communities on preventive measures; and strengthening collaboration among health ministries and other departments for a multi-sectoral response.”

Crespin reaffirmed the validity of these initiatives in ensuring that the communities are well informed on preventive measures, cases are detected as quickly as possible, and coordination and monitoring units are functional.

He called for the strengthening of epidemiological surveillance as well as the preparedness and response capacity of national health systems so that they can provide leadership at the national level in fighting the epidemic.

He also called for emphasis on advocacy and resource mobilization, communication and social and community mobilization, capacity building of affected and non-affected countries, monitoring and coordinating of the management of the epidemic.

Crespin said WAHO and the Commission were engaged with the training and sensitization of health officers on how to handle cases and precautionary measures to take in order to avoid transmission, as well as informing and sensitizing the people through educational messages aimed at risk reduction.

He announced that US$ 400 000 had been released to the three affected countries (Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone) with a view to strengthening their epidemiological surveillance and response capacity following a series of missions fielded to Guinea by a WAHO team.

- CAJ News

- CAJ News

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