The Ministry of Health through Rwanda Biomedical Center (RBC) and King Faisal Hospital have conducted a simulation exercise of Ebola to ensure readiness for prevention and fighting a deadly virus that was declared an outbreak in Uganda on September 20.
It was conducted at King Faisal hospital on October 17.
Rwanda has not received any Ebola related case, but the simulation exercise aims to assess the readiness of the medical teams to respond to an outbreak, if there is one.
The simulation exercise involves various personnel from King Faisal, Ministry of Health and Rwanda Biomedical Centre representatives. It involves different phases among them training sessions on Ebola disease, Ministry of Health guidelines, Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) during the disease outbreak and rehearsals.
The exercise also involves hospital staff participating in a hands-on practice to handle a “Ebola patient,” utilizing the proper tools and protocols that can successfully contain Ebola in the event of an outbreak.
“Today’s simulation exercise targets knowing our readiness on fighting Ebola virus. The virus is in our neighboring country, we must be ready,” Dr. Kambutse Immaculate, an Internal medicine doctor at King Faisal said.
“Essentially, the exercise shows us our strengths and weak areas that need to be improved. So far, we are ready, doctors have been trained and given SOPS to follow, if there is any case,” she added.
While the patient is already receiving emergency care, tests are run for 48 to 72 hours. Once the infection is confirmed, therapy can begin. To prevent the virus from infecting others, the crew also goes through a decontamination exercise.
During the simulation, a fictitious Ebola patient presented to the hospital with symptoms resembling those of the disease. Medical staff responded right away, isolating the patient and taking precautions as they treated the ostensibly ill patient.
“For a patient to be treated, there must be good and quick communication. The patients pass through various people who transport a patient to the hospital, before reaching the doctors. The communication must be effective,” Dr. Nkeshimana, who is in charge of Case Management at the Ministry of Health said.
“All the equipment should be available firstly; protective gears, brackets to slow dirty or possibly infected materials and others. Our responsibility is treating, and prevention. But also, social protection,” he added.
According to the Uganda Ministry of Health, as of 10 October 2022, 48 confirmed cases had been reported, including 17 fatalities, of which four were medical personnel.