BRAZZAVILLE, Republic of Congo, Nov. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Jhpiego is partnering with the Society of African Gynecologists and Obstetricians (SAGO) to expand and reinforce Ebola preparedness training for frontline health workers across West Africa in the event the virus outbreak spreads further in the region.
Jhpiego, an international health non-profit and Johns Hopkins University affiliate, and SAGO officials signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Ebola preparedness during the 13th Congress of SAGO, attended by more than 100 physicians, nurses and midwives from 17 West and Central African countries. The partnership will enable master trainers to learn new Ebola-related infection prevention and control skills that they can then share with health care providers in their respective countries so they are ready to act should the virus spread.
During the SAGO meeting, Jhpiego presented on the importance of infection prevention and control (IPC) as a critical intervention in containing the spread of Ebola to keep health workers safe on the job, and ensure that vulnerable pregnant women and newborns receive safe, effective and timely care.
Jhpiego is working closely with Ebola-impacted governments in Liberia and Guinea to build the capacity of health workers in IPC and help the governments restore critically needed maternal and newborn health services that have been suspended because of the outbreak. Most recently, Jhpiego led a regional training in Accra, Ghana, on Ebola preparedness for 39 government officials, training experts and health professionals from nine countries—Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Nigeria, Tanzania and Togo.
"Our new partnership with SAGO underscores our commitment to preventing the needless deaths of women and their families in West Africa, where we have worked for more than two decades," said Leslie Mancuso, Jhpiego President and CEO.
In Guinea, reproductive health services have been severely impacted by the Ebola outbreak, according to a review of maternal and other health services supported by Jhpiego. In the regions of Nzérékoré and Conakry, where the first Ebola cases occurred and which are now experiencing a surge in new infections, the number of women giving birth in a facility with a skilled birth attendant by their side plummeted by 87%.
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