Transmission of Ebola within the health system (2)

3 May, 2019

Joseph, you said: "This quick and urgent approach was how Nigeria, the most populated country in Africa dealt with the Ebola epidemic in 2014. I recall that there was emergency release of N1.9 Billion or so, from the Federal Government outside the normal health budget to implement the immediate and drastic steps mentioned above."

I recall in August 2014 HIFA discovered a major inaccuracy on the Nigeria Ministry of Health website: their Ebola fact sheet included the following inaccurate statements:

"Ebola VD is usually spread within a health care setting."

"Ebola VD could be spread through the following:... Inhalation of contaminated air in hospital environment"

"Who is at risk?... People that go to hospitals with poor hygiene and sanitation practices"

With Joseph's help, we advised the Minister of Health of these inaccuracies. The false Ebola guidance was removed and replaced with an MoH website called Ebola Virus Information Unit, with accurate information. I tried the website [http://www.health.gov.ng/ebolainfo/] just now without success and I could not find guidance on how to prevent and manage suspected Ebola on the MoH site. A Google search on Ebola Virus Information Unit was unproductive.

Similarly a search on the WHO Nigeria website revealed lots of 'situation reports' relating to DR Congo statistics, but it was hard to find any practical guidance on how to prevent and manage suspected Ebola.

It is vital that Ministry of Health and WHO country office websites worldwide are adequately supported to provide reliable and practical healthcare information for the general public (as well as for health professionals and policymakers).

Best wishes, Neil

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HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is coordinator of the HIFA global health campaign (Healthcare Information For All - www.hifa.org ), a global community with more than 19,000 members in 177 countries, interacting on six global forums in four languages. Twitter: @hifa_org FB: facebook.com/HIFAdotORG neil@hifa.org