Since the first case of Ebola occurred in March 2014 in Guinea, Ebola set off a global panic and resulted in thousands of fatalities. Although most of the fatalities were in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, the Ebola outbreak ravaged many West African communities and continued into 2015.
In 2014, House of Mercy Children’s Home, Lagos, Nigeria (HOM) responded to the outbreak in the affected countries by contributing towards the distribution of public health information to prevent more people from contracting the disease, provision of fuel for ambulances and emergency response vehicles, disinfection of public toilets and spaces, distribution of hand-washing kits and training of health workers.
Lofa, a dense jungle overlapping Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, the very place that had a large HIV outbreak in the 1980s is considered to be the likely source of the Ebola outbreak.
Regrettably, the response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa will never be remembered as an example of good leadership, neither by the governments of the countries affected nor by other nations and the international health organisations mandated to prepare for and respond to public health emergencies.
We are keeping hope alive for improved health care systems in Africa.