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Anambra ready to combat outbreak of communicable diseases

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Anambra State Rapid Response Team (RRT) says it is ready at all times to contain outbreak of communicable diseases, as it emphasises its doggedness at ensuring that the state will not be taken unawares by any of such outbreaks.

The Director, Public Health in the state’s Ministry of Health, Uchechukwu Onyejimbe noted this during a monthly meeting of the group in Awka at the weekend.

Onyejimbe said the RRT was established to respond to emergencies such as outbreak of Ebola, Lassa fever, Cholera and related diseases, and urged members of the team to feel free to ventilate their feelings and offer ideas that would be of benefit to the state.

The director said he was optimistic that the team would be a wonderful in terms of responding to emergencies and exigencies of the time.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) Representative in Anambra, Chukwumuanya Igboegwu said: “The earlier the team intervenes in any outbreak, the more they bring down the epidemic.”

According to Igboegwu, if you don’t intervene in time and a lot more become infected, it becomes more difficult to control it.
He urged the Team to build capacities by reading books on rapid response to emergencies, and also enjoined each of the members to have access to Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response System (IDSR).

The IDSR, he said had guidelines on how to respond to outbreaks and steps to take to avoid being infected, and called for regular meetings of the Team to enable them to be able to plan very well before any outbreak.

Anambra State Epidemiologist, Chijioke Obagha urged the members to attend monthly meetings to build their capacities to be able to face any challenge on the field.

“We work in a dangerous environment and that is why we are building capacities for everyone to know what to do on the field,’’ Obagha said.

The meeting ended with practical demonstration on how to wear protective equipment, when dealing with suspected infected persons and how to remove them at the end.

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