BY JEFFERSON IBIWALE, BENIN
As part of pre-emptive measures to prevent an outbreak of the Ebola disease in Edo State, the state government on Monday inaugurated a Rapid Response Committee, RCC, the commissioner for Health, Aihanuwa Eregie, announced.
Speaking at the inauguration of the committee in Benin on Monday, Eregie said that the committee is charged with the responsibility of approving and reviewing the epidemic preparedness and response plan of the state as well as mobilising resources for epidemic prevention and control.
“This committee is a critical step in the prevention, control, isolation and treatment of cases of the disease,” she said.
The commissioner, who was represented by the permanent secretary in the ministry, Peter Ugbodaga, said the committee would coordinate and monitor activities aimed at controlling outbreaks of the disease, including providing public enlightenment for the people.
According to her, the committee would also be in charge of utilisation of resources, the designation of isolation and treatment centres, case management and post-epidemic evaluation processes.
Eregie called on all institutions in the state, including state, federal and even international bodies, to work together to ensure that the state does not suffer any outbreak of the Ebola disease.
Also speaking at the event, the commissioner for Information and Orientation, Louis Odion, solicited for the support of the media in the creation of awareness about the viral disease, while stressing the need for proper clarification of the facts in order to create panic among the people.
Membership of the committee is drawn from the state ministries of health, information and orientation, local government and agriculture and education as well as the University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Irrua Teaching Hospital, Nigerian Immigration Service, Nigerian Prisons Service, World Health Organisation, WHO, and the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, among other institutions.