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Saturday, 9 May 2015

Is Liberia Free Of The Ebola Disease?

It is breaking news. It is still trending on twitter. The world is happy. West Africa is happy. Liberia is happy. The good news was as handed down to the country. LIBERIA IS EBOLA FREE. To many this translates to no more death in the West African nation, but to others it is simply a good turn of events for their businesses, especially foreign businesses.

A country is declared free of an epidermic disease, after 42 days of no new recorded cases. Other West African nations, like Nigeria and Sierra Leone,  have long been declared free of the disease. But the epidermics continued unabated in Liberia. I would not want to enter in any blame game but something was definitely wrong for the disease to have lasted this long, in a country whose neighbours put the same epidermics under check.

Considering the pathogenesis of the Ebola Disease, it's mode of transmission, hold the key to explaining what happened in Liberia.

Yes, the country has been declared Ebola free by the World Health Organisation. 
Yes, the President of Liberia is billed to go on a tour of the capital to thank health workers for their bravery during the scourge.
But more proactive preventive measures and protocols must still be activated to ensure this disease do not come up again.

Basic personal hygiene and environmental sanitation hygiene, should be encouraged in Liberia. A cue must be taken from other nations like Nigeria, that understood and acted almost immediately. All preventive measures and protocols are still active, albeit on a lower degree, in Nigeria.

I know in some private university in Nigeria, like the Madonna University, hand washing and other measures are still on, even though Nigeria has been considered Ebola free.

Ebola is transmitted via any body fluid from person to person. Major symptoms include, high grade fever, greater than 39 degrees centigrade. Others are vomiting, generalised body weakness, blood oozing out from orifices, and some neurological manifestations like fainting, headache etc. Avoid eating bush meat, bat meat, especially poorly cooked meat.

As the disease is not transmitted in the early manifestations of this symptoms, anybody with any of this sign should be rushed to the hospital for proper care.

Liberia has been declared free, but vigilance must be the key word. Health personnels must have a high index of suscipicion, to be able to diagnose this disease. Patients must not hesitate  to report to the hospital.

 If you ask me, we are never truly free of this disease, especially when those basic preventive measures and protocols are long forgotten.
Liberia should take note of this.