By Morrison O.G Sayon
As the deadly Ebola virus rages on in the Liberian capital Monrovia, hundreds of Liberians as well as foreign nationals have been rushing to various pharmacies in the country to purchase essential drugs for their homes.
Since the news of the second outbreak of the Ebola virus in Liberia, many have expressed fear of going to the hospitals or clinics for medical treatment as several health workers are escaping from there, due to the rapid spread of the virus. The virus has in recent times killed several health workers in the country and other top Liberian Government officials.
Liberians have now resorted to going to Pharmacies to purchase essential drugs for their families to avoid any contact with others or being considered as Ebola patients whenever they are admitted or visit hospitals or clinics for medical attention.
This comes in the wake of nurses and other health workers’ alleged refusal to report to work due to fear of the outbreak of the Ebola epidemic. Recently, it was reported that nurses at Liberia’s biggest hospital, the John F. Kennedy Medical Center are refusing to continue work as death toll continues to increase from the deadly Ebola virus in Liberia. It was also reported that the Emergency section at JFK has been shut down, while a small team of health care workers and patients have been located to another floor in the hospital.
It was also reported that the ER will remain closed until it is sprayed thoroughly and quarantined for 21 incubation period. Nurses and doctors are being advised by family, friends and loved ones to stay away from the hospital until the Ebola epidemic subsides.
The virus has killed some top Medical Doctors in Liberia including Dr. Samuel Brisbane, a former Chief Medical Doctor at the Firestone Rubber Plantation Hospital and a Physician Assistant who died from the virus on Saturday. It has been reported that Doctors at both JFK and Phebe Hospitals are currently quarantined at the ELWA Hospital in Paynesville where health practitioners from the Samaritan Purse have been working around the clock to treat serious cases.
The situation has indeed created serious fear amongst Liberians to the extent that many of the citizens have resorted to using hand gloves and other protective gears to prevent themselves from the virus. In Many homes, people are now using water mixed with chlorine to wash their hands as a means of protecting their families from the virus.
At the same time, government institutions in the country have put into place protective measures to prevent further spread of the Ebola virus and the Liberian Government has also instituted several measures including the closure of its borders with neighboring countries to curtail the death tolls.
Presently, no one is willing to go to hospitals or clinics for treatment as they are afraid of getting in contact with the deadly Ebola virus.
In the wake of the spread of the Ebola virus, President Ellen Johnson- Sirleaf has already declared the outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus in the country a national emergency calling on Liberians to do all to protect themselves against the Ebola epidemic. Government has also instituted measures to restrict those traveling in and out of the country as well as those living and traveling in the country.
Pres. Sirleaf has also constituted a National Task Force, headed by her to combat the Ebola outbreak. The role of the National Task Force is to work with the country’s health team to provide support and guidance to them.