Liberia: High-Power WAHO Delegation Arrives in Country

Liberia’s Health Minister Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah holds meeting with WAHO Director General Dr. Melchior Joel


— Pays courtesy Visit to Health Authorities 

A high-powered delegation from the West African Health Organization (WAHO) has arrived in the country as guests of the Ministry of Health and other health stakeholders in the country.

The visit of the delegation, headed by WAHO's Director General, Dr. Melchior Athanase Codjovi Joel, is part of efforts by the regional health body aimed at enhancing cooperation and collaboration in Liberia’s health sector. 

The delegation’s visit to the Ministry is aimed at assessing health facilities and projects implemented by the organization as well as identifying challenges faced by the country’s health sector for continuous intervention.

The visit, health authorities said, is also geared towards strengthening collaboration and heightening cooperation between the Ministry and WAHO for the purpose of building a resilient health care system for all West African citizens.

Over the years, WAHO has been partnering with the Liberian government in the area of healthcare delivery as a way of contributing to the country’s health system and humanity. It is one of the biggest non-profit health organizations in the sub-region that seeks  proactive instruments of regional health integration and enables high-impact and cost-effective interventions and programs.  

The organization has initiated several projects in the country’s health sector, including the construction of a health facility in Bo Waterside, the training of specialized doctors, and equipping the newly constructed Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Dialysis Center at the John F. Kennedy Medical Center (JFKMC) in Monrovia.   

Dr. Melchior Joel, in remarks during the visit, named community health programs, family health, and nutritional health, as areas that his organization sees as feasible for intervention. 

Though, as Dr. Joel said, there are other priority areas that need attention, this will be a systematic approach in the sub-region, especially prioritizing primary health, which is necessary for the reduction of deaths.

Before their departure, the team is expected to tour key health facilities, including the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Dialysis Center and a health facility in Bo-Waterside, Grand Cape Mount County. 

Meanwhile, receiving the delegation was Liberia’s Health Minister, Dr. Wilhelmina Jallah, who lavished praise on WAHO for its numerous contributions to Liberia amid the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. The WHO's implementation of major projects in various parts of the country, including the payment of professors to train doctors at the John F. Kennedy Medical Center to treat dialysis patients and the construction of a cross-border health facility in Bo-Waterside, is a welcome initiative, according to Minister Jallah.

“We appreciate the facilitation of our dialysis training at the dialysis center and many other interventions made by WAHO, especially during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Dr. Jallah said. 

She also requested additional assistance from WAHO, particularly in the areas of human resource development and the enhancement of incentives for rural health workers. 

"We are appealing to WAHO to help us train some of our medical practitioners and pay incentives for our rural health workers," she said.

The visit of the delegation is expected to last from February 14 to February 17, 2023.