China pledges continued support to ebola-struck areas

World Today

China pledges continued support to ebola-struck areas

As the Ebola virus continues spreading in West Africa, China has pledged to remain its support to the region and help build better healthcare systems.

The country has sent around 800 medical experts to the worst-affected countries over the past six months.

They have now not only been treating Ebola patients but training local staff in disease prevention and control.

CCTV’s Katerina Vittozzi reported this story from Accra.

China pledges continued support to ebola-struck areas

China pledges continued support to ebola-struck areas

As the Ebola virus continues spreading in West Africa, China has pledged to remain its support to the region and help build better healthcare systems. The country has sent around 800 medical experts to the worst-affected countries over the past six months.

Highlights:

  • Since September 2014, Chinese medics have worked in this Ebola treatment unit in Sierra Leone. It is funded by the Chinese government.
  • Beijing has also provided a mobile Ebola-testing lab.
  • The entire international community was criticized for being slow to wake up to West Africa’s Ebola epidemic but China was among the first to send aid. That was still nearly six months after the World Health Organisation formally acknowledged the outbreak.
  •  China has sent more than $120 million worth of humanitarian supplies and around 800 medical experts to the affected countries. It’s still not the biggest international donor but it’s the largest humanitarian response ever mounted by China.
  • China has opened Ebola treatment facilities in both Sierra Leone and Liberia. At a centre near the Sierra Leone capital Freetown, the team has been using special video equipment to monitor patients, and minimize staff’s exposure to people with the deadly virus.
  • China has used these techniques in the past while dealing with SARS in 2003 and also with Avian flu in 2009 and 2010 and has been training and mentoring  local healthcare staff in dealing with epidemics.
  • China has pledged a long-term commitment to the region to build back stronger healthcare systems and has said its health teams and mobile labs will remain in West Africa until Ebola is eradicated.