A Chinese medical team in West Africa is providing vital support in the Ebola outbreak. CCTV America’s Nina deVries reports.
The 10-strong Chinese medical team arrives every morning to diagnose and treat patients in Freetown’s King Harmen Government Hospital in Sierra Leone. The Chinese medical teams have been coming here for over 40 years and rotate about every two years. Now, with the Ebola crisis, their help is needed more than ever.
Staff members have to dress every day in special protective gear to avoid contacting the deadly virus which has killed over 1,200 people in West Africa.
They refer suspected cases for testing. The team has also posted signs urging people to take precautions.
One of the biggest challenges is that people who fear they have virus are afraid to go to a hospital. Dr. Wang Yu, a specialist for internal medicine, said locals are scared to be put in isolation. He himself was put in quarantine for 21 days, the time needed to make sure one does not have the disease. This was after he came into contact with an Ebola patient who later died. He’s grateful he did not contract the virus.
China is stepping up its help for countries hardest hit by Ebola. Its Center for Disease Control has brought three specialists into Sierra Leone. They will stay for a month. Their main job is to train local doctors on how to prevent Ebola.
Sierra Leoneon staff are grateful. Fatamata Jalloh, the Deputy Matron, said “They’ve been doing free surgeries. They’ve been rendering free health facilities, even before the free healthcare. The Chinese team launched a free surgical campaign for women with fibroid.”
Jalloh also added that her staff have learned a lot from the Chinese teams. And the team here says it will continue to help Sierra Leone fight this massive outbreak.