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Buliisa health workers resume Ebola screening

FILE PHOTO: Ebola screening point

Kampala, Uganda |  THE INDEPENDENT | More than 100 health workers in Buliisa district have resumed Ebola screening barely three months after laying down their tools over the none payment.

The Health workers had been deployed to manage various Ebola screening centers at Wanseko, Butiaba, Walukuba and Somsio and Bugoigo among others.

They include members of Village Health teams-VHTs and Health workers attached to various health facilities in the district. They abandoned work in January after the Health Ministry failed to pay them over Shillings 12 million.

Since then, no Ebola screening exercise has been taking place at the porous at Wanseko landing sites where thousands of people including Congolese and South Sudanese cross into Buliisa district using Wanseko-Panyimur Ferry that plies the route twice a day.

However, on Tuesday morning, the Buliisa District Health Officer, Dr. Nelson Naisye, said the health workers have resumed work after receiving their payment from the Health Ministry. He says the health workers are screening people at Wanseko, Walukuba and Somsio.

“We appreciate the government for responding positively by paying the health workers and they were able to resume work on Monday this week,” said Naisye. He rallied the health workers to be committed and serve diligently since the disease is still a big threat.

Bullisa district established Ebola screening centers last year to avert possible infiltration by suspected Ebola victims from the Democratic Republic of Congo-DRC where more than 2000 people succumbed to the epidemic.

DRC declared their tenth Ebola outbreak in 40 years on August 1, 2018.  The outbreak devastated areas in South Kivu, North Kivu, and Ituri provinces, which are close to Buliisa district in Western Uganda.     With the frequent cross-border movements for personal reasons and trade, government set up a number of screening centers specifically for people crossing from DR Congo.

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