Traditional Leaders Pledge Support to PREVAIL Study

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    Amb. Juli Endee.jpg

    Traditional leaders, civil society organizations and heads of the Muslim and Christian councils have pledged their support to the Ebola Natural History Study in order to save the lives of many Ebola survivors who are going through health complications.
    They made the pledge yesterday at the end of a one day high level stakeholders and groups’ community engagement and social mobilization forum to solicit their support for the enrollment of Ebola survivors in the Ebola Natural History Study at the Monrovia City Hall.
    The program brought together over 91 participants from various communities and counties, including Duport Road, Chicken Soup Factory, Clara Town, Grand Cape Mount, Margibi and several other communities and counties.
    Speaking at the one day event, Deputy Director for Operations at the Partnership for Research on Ebola Vaccines in Liberia (PREVAIL) Julia Lysander said the program is a five year study and the investigators would keep track of survivors to see how they are coping after surviving the deadly disease.
    She said the study would provide free medication to help those who are facing complications recover from their various problems.
    She told the traditional leaders that the John F. Kennedy Medical Center and Redemption Hospital are the centers that are carrying on the study with the C.H. Rennie Hospital in Kakata to be added soon to the study.
    Madam Lysander explained that the one-day discussion was intended to pay respect to the traditional council by soliciting support for the enrollment of Ebola survivors residing in their various communities.
    She said the study is targeting 1,500 Ebola survivors and 6,000 direct relatives and contacts associated with the survivors across the country.
    For her part the chairlady of Arahia Mosque and DAWAH Women, Jadai Massaquoi from Banjor, Virginia, outside Monrovia said stigmatization remains a major challenge for Ebola survivors which made some people afraid to come forward to participate in the study.
    She said following the discussions with PREVAIL and Liberia Crusaders for Peace (LCP), she would serve as ambassador in her community to encourage survivors to take advantage in the study.
    “I was affected by Ebola. It was in July of last year my relative died in Harbel and I joined others to bathe the body. Few days later I was quarantined but God kept me alive,” Kissi Governor Tawah Yafomdo told her story.
    Madam Yafondo said despite what she went through, she would now work in her Chicken Soup Factory community to bring more survivors on board.
    “Majority of Ebola survivors in my community bring their complaint to me. Some say they cannot see; other people can say they have severe headache and other problems. But I am grateful that this study has come to help them,” Madam Yafomdo said.
    Ambassador Juli Endee, PREVAIL Social Mobilization and Communication Engagement Lead, in her remarks encouraged the participants to begin the awareness and serve as ambassadors in order to save the lives of many survivors facing health complications.

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