Islamabad, October 15, 2014 (PPI-OT): Saira Afzal Tarar, Minister of MoNHSRC, while chairing a high profile meeting in the Ministry today, directed to nominate Federal and Provincial DG, health as focal persons on Ebola virus disease (EVD) coordinating body. A detailed action plan was chalked out in consultation of all stakeholders and development partners.
The meeting was attended by federal and provincial level Health officials, Army, reps of Civil Aviation Authority, development partners including UNICEF and WHO. In the meeting it was agreed to notify a coordination body with representation of all partners and stakeholders and responsibilities were assigned to undertake major tasks.
Minister, while making the remarks, stressed on high quality trainings for health officials, CAA staff at the entry and exit points of the Airports. She also directed the provinces to identify hospitals in each province and federal level with isolation rooms for Ebola patients. Minister directed to initiate a strong awareness campaign throughout the country and include community level participation.
WHO committed to carry out extensive trainings for the staff while UNICEF Health section has committed to support the Government of Pakistan in developing a comprehensive Communication Plan and IEC material for Ebola virus awareness across the country.
Minister for National Health Services, regulations and Coordination Saira Afzal Tarar said that Ministry has taken various measures to provide guidance, advice and capacity building to take preventive measures, identify suspect cases of Ebola Virus Diseases (EVD) and manage the infected cases as Ministry has an important role to play through all the entry and exit points of the country through coordination with UN agencies, Provinces and Pakistan Army.
WHO declared Ebola as International health threat in August 2014.Though Pakistan has a low risk for Ebola transmission. However MoNHSRC has ensured all requisite measures as per WHO and International guidelines.
Advisories were issued by the Ministry of NHSR and C on 18 August 2014 regarding the measures to mitigate the threat of EVD to all the provincial Chief Secretaries, Additional Secretary FATA, Director General Military Operation, Provincial Secretaries Health, Secretary CADD, Chairman CDA, Chief commissioner Islamabad, Surgeon General Pakistan Army, Provincial Director General Health Services and Director Central Health Establishment.
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