Home Health Photos: 13 Red Cross Societies discuss future pandemics, epidemics management

Photos: 13 Red Cross Societies discuss future pandemics, epidemics management

1

A total of 13 Red Cross and Red Cross Crescent Societies from 13 countries are meeting in Kampala to learn from Uganda’s experience in fighting Ebola Virus in the shortest time possible and also partner to form a collaborative body that will fight future epidemics and pandemics.

The meeting is being held at Speke Resort Munyonyo between Manda and Tuesday this week and has attracted dignitaries from the 13 countries of Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda, South Sudan, DRC, Sudan, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Madagascar, and Comoros.

This gathering of esteemed experts and professionals aims to foster a collaborative environment where innovative strategies and best practices can be shared, ultimately enhancing our collective efforts in saving lives.

In his opening remarks, Robert Kwesiga, the Secretary General of the Uganda Red Cross Society (URCS) said that there is a need to build local capacities towards epidemic preparedness and response at both the country level and National.

“To do this our institutions have to be accountable, we need strong leadership and the right human resource. According to the reports being authored, these epidemics are on the rise, more and more are coming and therefore, we can’t wish them away but how do we prepare ourselves to face them,” he said.

Countries, he said must devise means on how they can build capacities at both the country level and National level to face these epidemics/pandemics and three things to note; what makes our institutions accountable?; Strong leadership; and Investing in the right human resources.

Dr Daniel Kyabayinze the director of public health at the Ministry of Health in his officiating remarks said that pandemics start as epidemics, & when they’re not managed well, they turn into pandemics. Collaboration URCS enabled us to win the war against the Ebola virus disease in 69 days.

“We must have proper preparedness, we must have surveillance Uganda at the East African One-Stop border points, and also we employ the foot health agencies to help so that if people are crossing between two different territories we are aware of their health statuses,” he said.

Mr. Kwesiga said that the collaborations will lead to increased community engagement backed by full government support.

“There is a need to build local capacities towards epidemics preparedness and response at both the country level and National. To do this our institutions have to be accountable, we need strong leadership and the right human resource,” he said.

The head of the delegation for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) Juba Cluster Mr. Papa Tall Moussa, who represented the regional IFRC head said that national societies have the capacity to deal with any pandemic, and so there is no need to bring in experts from other countries.

“Dealing with these pandemics needs a bottom-up approach. National societies and IFRC Africa have been collaboratively collecting learnings from Ebola (and other Viral Hemorrhagic Fevers) responses since the West Africa outbreak of 2014-2016, up through the most recent EVD outbreak in Uganda in 2022 and Marburg in TZ in 2023,” he said.

While sharing their experiences, Dr. Josephine Okwera, URCS director of health and social services at URCS said that “We deployed 9 ambulances during the Ebola response to support two call and dispatch centers in Mubende and Jinja districts. Overall, we carried out 1,333 ambulance evacuations/transfers within the 7 districts of response,”

Adding, “Our volunteers are community-based, they leave in these communities and are always engaged in other health issues when there are No pandemic responses. But, during outbreaks, our volunteers are put on health insurance & some small funding,”

The meeting will be closed tomorrow Tuesday, August 22, 2023.

Previous articleByarugaba dropped, Ayota picked
Next articlePolice arrest a 28year old for allegedly raping an 85-year-old in Mukono.

1 COMMENT

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here