The country health sector has been seriously pretentious by the Ebola epidemic, Dr. Brima Kargbo went on to say that the first project (HSDSSP) is to help strengthen our community health services. Enhance better facilities like emergency ambulances that will facilitate the conveying of pregnant women and lactating mothers from remote areas to district hospitals.
He furthered stated that, the second project is a joint one to be undertaken by the Ministry of Health and Sanitation together with the Ministry of Agriculture to help strengthen national , regional capacity empowerment, collaborative disease surveillance, and epidemic preparedness in West Africa.
In his statement, the World Bank’s Acting Country Manager Sheikh Sesay informed all that his organization has decided to solely fund the projects as a result of the fact that Sierra Leone as a nation truly needs the said projects at this particular moment.
He further explained that the duo projects will serve as a new phase in the lives of the people of Sierra Leone adding that his organization would always be there to give its support to the people of this country.
Formally launching the projects, the Minister of Health and Sanitation, Dr Abubakrr Fofanah vividly stated that the projects were carefully selected based on the expressed needs of the country following a consultative process that was inclusive and participatory, adding that, the projects were carefully selected to reflect government’s wider agenda of addressing maternal and child health issues as well as building a strong and resilient health system learning from the deadly Ebola outbreak.
He went on to say that the projects were evident based drawing from the lessons learnt in recent times as well as incorporating the best features of proven cost effectiveness interventions around the world. The Minister submitted that, since the end of the Ebola epidemic, all projects they had developed with the World Bank including the ones they were launching had what they referred to as “Zero Dollar” component which simply means that they make provision for unforeseen health emergencies. He thanked the World Bank for truly exhibiting another attribute of being an institution that does not only observe lessons but truly learn lessons.
Speaking on progress report, the Minister said that his ministry has commenced the deployment of 43 medical doctors, 4 radiographers and 4 laboratory scientists nationwide adding that by the end of January, it was hopeful that 43 medical doctor would be in post which would greatly improve the number of practicing medical doctors in our public health sector from the current number of 148 to 191. He ended by calling on all Ministries, Departments and Agencies to work collectively to help improve our health sector.