MANILA - The Department of Health (DOH) today announced that it will be conducting specialized training programs for health workers on detection, treatment and prevention of the spread of the of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) disease in the country. This will done in coordination with the World Health Organization (WHO) in the Philippines.
“After the successful National Ebola Summit held last Friday (October 10), we want to primarily increase the capacity of our health workers nationwide in responding to EVD, like what we did when SARS and H1N1 threatened the country a few years ago,” Health Secretary Enrique Ona declared.
The training, starting October 28 and every week thereafter, was designed by the DOH and the WHO Philippines. Expert trainers, such as experts in infectious diseases and EVD, have been recruited from within the Philippines and overseas.
“WHO Philippines is delighted to be working with the Department of Health to provide training on the detection and treatment of EVD and on how to prevent its spread here in the Philippines. The health workers trained will be essential for Philippine efforts to protect the country from the potential threat of the disease,” Dr. Julie Hall, WHO Representative for the Philippines said.
The training will provide a deeper understanding of EVD, its transmission and epidemiology. It will also enhance the participants’ practical skills in particular areas (such as personal protection, security and safety). The knowledge and skills gained from the training is expected to increase the capacity of the national health system to prevent or respond if an imported case of EVD in the Philippines occurs.
An orientation will also be given on the geographical and cultural setting in West Africa to help provide background for all participants on why the disease has spread there and what has been done to bring it under control.
The training will be made available to (3) groups of participants coming from: 1) all DOH-referral hospitals, 2) private hospitals, and 3) local government hospitals. Participants from each hospital will be composed of the hospital’s infection control specialist, doctors, nurses, and medical technologists.
The training is being delivered using a mix of practical exercises and theoretical learning and will be based on standard WHO training on EVD. It will involve pre- and post-training examinations. In addition to the general training, some of the “classes” will be done by selected groups, for example, the clinical guidelines for the treatment of cases, the principles of outbreak control and response and logistics support.
“With all these preparations and with the assistance of international partners like the WHO, we are optimistic that we will be able to respond appropriately to EVD if it enters the country,” the health chief said.