The former vice president for Ebola survivors in Liberia, Henry D. Tony, is calling on the Government of Liberia and international partners to pay keen attention to survivors still suffering complication as a result of the deadly Ebola outbreak in 2014. Speaking to reporters in Monrovia on Wednesday, Mr. Tony says he doesn’t really see any attention coming from the government for citizens facing post-Ebola health complications.
He laments that though they have been living their lives the best way they could, “We are not still getting needed medical attention when it comes to our health.”
He says every time survivors visit public health facilities across the country, they receive very little attention and worst of all, there are no drugs or medication just prescriptions from doctors and then patients are told to go out and purchase the prescribed medication.
“These drugs prescribed by the hospitals are very expensive, one that most of the survivors cannot afford. This situation is very bad for most of the survivors, especially the kind of medical complication they have,” he further explains.
He continues that many survivors do not know if their Ebola side effects are only temporary or not, as doctors cannot tell them.“We need to know the severity of our medical complications. And this can only happen, when we are receiving quality medical attention.”
Mr. Tony notes that survivors need more than simply food and money, because they are suffering from trauma, deep emotional pain, which require psychological support.
“With stigmatization decreasing, the issues of trauma and depression cannot be underestimated from among us the survivors. Most survivors have not received psychosocial counseling, which they need more than ever before.”
The deadly Ebola virus that ravaged Liberia in 2014, bringing the entire nation down to its knees may have been defeated two years ago, but survivors of the menace continue to bear the scars, some of which will take eternity to heal, though no medical assistance seems to be coming.
Survivors continue to complain of lack of medical attention both from government and others who had promised to intervene.
These Ebola survivors, some of whom were nurses, burial team members (grave digger, contact tracers and others) may be alive, but definitely not the same living condition they had prior to the EVD outbreak.Many of them are currently faced with serious medical predicaments, including pressure in the eyes, which affect their vision; coupled with joint pains and weakness.
By Lewis S. Teh-Editing by Jonathan Browne