By Tracey Khan – Drakes
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Health Minister Dr. Bheri Ramsaran has dispelled rumors that a suspected case of the deadly Ebola Virus is being monitored in Guyana.
During a telephone interview with iNews this morning, Monday, October 27, Dr Ramsaran said he has been in conversation with health officials at the Georgetown Public Hospital and received no such reports.
He told iNews that such an eventuality was something serious and could ignite fear among the population and called on those spreading such rumors to desist.
Meanwhile, former Health Minister, Dr Leslie Ramsammy praised the ministry of health’s response to the suspected case of Ebola last Friday, following the admittance of a woman at the Georgetown Public Hospital, who had recently returned from West Africa.
The woman was quarantined and monitored after which she was declared Ebola free. During an interview with iNews today, Dr Ramsammy explained that the suspected case gave health workers the opportunity to test its response mechanism and also to identify areas of weakness.
Further investigations also revealed that there have been no reports of the virus in the Ivory Coast ahead of the woman’s arrival here and she has reportedly not been exposed to anyone or any location where the virus has been detected.
Dr Ramsammy, who is now the country’s Agriculture Minister added that in 2003, an infectious disease plan was designed to deal with a number of diseases including Ebola and it is this same plan that the Ministry of Health has modified to fit its response.
Dr. Ramsammy believes that it was a “blessing” to have a suspected case of the Ebola” virus as it displayed the response capacity of the health sector.
On the issue of health care workers sharing protective gears, Dr Ramsammy does not believe that this is possible since most of the gears that are used are disposal.
Guyana has a mass preparedness campaign on-stream as the dreaded Ebola virus continues to cause worldwide uproar.
Some 1, 600 medical professionals have commenced training on dealing with the virus and the necessary approach towards administering care to persons who have contracted the virus as opposed to those who are suspected to have it.
In addition, emphasis is being placed on safety and precautionary measures for health care providers, who may come in contact with an infected person or environment, as the Ebola is highly contagious and spreads rapidly through direct or indirect contact with bodily fluids.