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Libyan Newswire

UNDP assisting Mali to contain the Ebola epidemic

03 Dec 2014

imagePolice turned away patients at the Clinique Pasteur in Bamako, Mali, after the hospital was put under quarantine for the Ebola virus. Photo: IRIN/Katarina Höije

The United Nations Development Programme, working closely with the UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER), has stepped up its effort to help Mali stem the progression of the Ebola virus disease.

UNDP has allocated one million dollars toward helping the government treat patients, monitor the spread of the disease along the borders, raise awareness among the population and centralize data while helping all regions respond to the epidemic more effectively. Throughout this process, UNDP will strengthen Mali’s crisis coordination cell.

“Our duty is to help Mali stop this terrible disease, which has not only killed thousands of men, women and children, but also weakened economies and is wiping out development progress,” said the UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Mali, David Gressly.

By monitoring all those who came in contact with the first case — a two-year-old girl–, Mali’s Ministry of Health was able to confirm that she didn’t infect anyone. Health workers also successfully treated a patient for the first time, a sign that the country is now better prepared.

The Global Fund to Fight against AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has allocated more than USD 600,000 towards UNDP’s support to the Ministry of Health. This funding will help purchase health and protective equipment, fund incentives for health personnel and strengthen prevention measures in hospitals across the country.

The latest country affected by the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, Mali has registered six deaths, with the first two cases having crossed the border from neighboring Guinea. UNMEER has opened an office in Mali to help the country prevent the disease from spreading further.

In early December, UNDP delivered computer equipment to the Ministry of Health. David Gressly also announced the delivery of motorcycles to facilitate the work of teams in charge of prevention, case identification and contact tracing.

UNDP’s response to the crisis in West Africa is focusing on three priorities:  Stronger coordination and service delivery; Community mobilization and outreach; Socio-economic impact and recovery.

The epidemic is slowing down economic growth and closing down businesses, affecting the means of making a living of millions of the poorest and most vulnerable people in the region.

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