Via ProMED-mail, a report by Jean Paul Gonzalez: Ebola virus disease - West Africa (37): Sierra Leone Preparedness. Click through for the moderator's comments. Excerpt:
Regarding "Mali preparedness" in ProMED-mail post "Ebola virus disease - West Africa (37)," I went to Sierra Leone with Joseph Fair to set up, with the local MOH and in-country WHO office, an emergency preparedness and response to the ebolavirus disease (EVD) outbreak.
I think it would be fair to recognize -- as you did for Mali and Senegal -- the amazing work that has been done in Sierra Leone by all MOH health workers in setting up (thanks to their unique expertise on VHF [viral hemorrhagic fevers] with Lassa fever) an emergency sustainable response on EVD preparedness.
For the 1st time in EVD history, that type of wide preparedness, from clinic, to port health officer -- without closing the border -- to epidemiologist, reporting system, and counseling (still ongoing), has been done in heretofore ebolavirus "virgin" territories, but at high risk, regarding the ethnic groups (in the epidemic epicenter of Kisigoudou) shared with Guinea, which have ultimately protected, or at least uniquely prepared, Sierra Leone.
Not only were the RT-PCR [real-time polymerase chain reaction] tests and the other sophisticated equipment we brought in and trained lab workers on useful, but also and essentially, in the matter of preparedness, case management, case surveillance, community counseling, safe burial, etc. were targeted, which are fundamental to apply before "things" happen (and this is quite unique).