20th March 2019
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Over 1,000 health workers trained to help fight disease outbreaks

Author : Memoscar Lasuba | Published: 2 years ago

The World Health Organization says it has trained more than 1000 health workers in South Sudan on disease detection, outbreak investigation and response.

The USAID-funded initiative was carried out between 2015 and 2016 with an aim of “building the capacity for disease surveillance and response in South Sudan”.  

The trainees were recruited from counties across the country.

Some of them were offered skills on cholera sample collection, processing, packaging, shipment, and cholera rapid diagnostic testing.

While others were trained “on reporting, preparedness and case management of infectious disease, skills on how “to confirm diseases like measles, meningitis, and bacterial pathogens amongst others” were also taught to the trainees, says the UN health agency.

Meanwhile, infectious diseases pose a major public health challenge causing significant levels of illness, disability, and death in the country, according to the WHO.

“South Sudan is a challenging work environment because of insecurity and a limited ability to access some of the country’s most vulnerable people,” said Dr Abdulmumini Usman WHO Representative.

Dr Usman stressed that malaria represented the highest rate of infections.

“[Of the] three million cases reported since 2015, malaria is one of the biggest causes of illness and death in South Sudan” he stated, adding that cholera was also a major public health concern with more than 4 500 cases reported since 2015.

Measles and kala-azar were also among common infectious diseases presenting a major challenge in the health sector.