Several West African Countries in the sub region including several health related organizations are attending a two day ECOWAS post Ebola Virus disease regional meeting in Monrovia.
The meeting is intended for stock taking on the status implementation of recommendations and lessons learned from the recent unprecedented EVD break and will also build on the recommendations from the decision of the head of governments of ECOWAS States and the Abuja declaration aimed at improving the regional and sub regional capacity for prevention, detection and response to threats of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases. Speaking at the opening of the meeting, Liberia Health Minister, Dr. Bernice Dahn said the recent EVD experience continues to remind and challenge the region including the International Community that it was at risk to any disease outbreak; therefore, it was important that adequate preparation for prevention be made,” the Liberian Health Minister intoned. Minister Dahn maintained that the inadequacies in the health system should remind stakeholders in the Health sector that it is vulnerable and requires the sharing of resources, expertise and information. “Today, we gather here to technically review status of implementation of these post EVD recommendations that formed the bedrock for articulating our investment plans for building a resilient health system,” the minister stated. It is anticipated that conclusions reached from the deliberation will constitute the “Monrovia Declaration” to be endorsed by the heads of governments and States of ECOWAS. For his part, the Director General of the West African Health Organization (WAHO) Dr, Xavier Crispin said the meeting is intended to implement recommendation made by the Presidents of Togo and Liberia, the region’s coordinators for the fight against epidemic. Dr. Crispin said the meeting will also access the implementation of key decisions made by the two leaders. The decision included putting in place ECOWAS regional center for disease control, one health approach and the funding of the solidarity fund for the region. He said the meeting will afford the region to get information from partners on how much dollars have been mobilized for the region by partners and how much have been pumped in the health system in terms of reconstruction and helping the health Minister in building a resilient health system.