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Sierra Leone News:NERC give $1.2m to Paramount Chiefs

CEO Alfred Palo ContehNational Ebola Response Centre (NERC) Chief, Rtd. Major Palo Conteh yesterday in his weekly press briefing said they have given one million two hundred thousand dollars to the Paramount Chiefs through the Ministry of Local Government.
CEO Palo Conteh said the Chiefs wrote a proposal to combat Ebola that he endorsed and the money was released last Saturday to Local Government Ministry for onward transmission.
He told reporters that the money came from the World Bank.
The CEO also commended the World Bank, David Nabarro and Anthony Banbury for their relentless support in the fight as they were in the NERC office on Monday to continue their support after the country failed to meet the 70-70-60 target which expired on Sunday.
CEO Palo Conteh said in a recent perception study conducted by FOCUS 1000 with the support of the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, CDC and UNICEF has shown that awareness and knowledge of Ebola has increased significantly.
“The study which was conducted in mid-October revealed that over 90% of respondents reported that they would go to a hospital, if they had a fever or suspected they had Ebola.
The study also showed that there has been a significant reduction in stigmatization of Ebola survivors, with an 81% reduction in the proportion of respondents who would not welcome back a neighbour who had Ebola.”
The NERC boss said we must be vigilant, as approximately one-third of respondents revealed that if a family member dies at home, they would not accept alternatives to traditional funerals or burials”. Of concern, 10% of respondents stated they would touch the body and 13% said they would not wait for a burial team. Western Area has the highest rate of negative attitude towards safe and dignified burials compared to other regions.”
Palo Conteh said the figures should make us focus attention on traditional burial and funeral rites. “We must find alternatives to honor our family members who are dying or have died from Ebola.
He said many more centres are opening and as at present, there are over 400 beds now across the country and he said Goderich centre is ready and has been handed over to the  Emergency Hospital.
“I have met with ‘Save the Children’ and I have told them that they need to do more within the coming days to make the centre active and workable in the coming days. 4,000 additional staff have been trained by the British over a five-week period and they will be working in the holding and treatment centres.”
The CEO said Lungi Airport received a much welcomed boost from EU/WHO as they recently reviewed the current screening procedures in Freetown as well as Conakry and Monrovia.
He said he was very happy to declare that Dr. komba Songu Mbriwa is negative again of the Ebola virus and that was done at the PTS treatment centre. “There is much to do to break the transmission rates, as I always say, it will get worse before it gets better, so we must redouble our efforts, but we must hold our nerves to win this battle.”
Thursday November 04, 2014

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