The John F. Kennedy Medical Center in Monrovia and Chevron Liberia on Tuesday signed an agreement to establish a Center for Excellence for Infectious Disease Control.
Chevron Liberia is co-funding the initial investment for the project as part of its Corporate Social Investment plan and as a member of the Ebola Private Sector Mobilization Group (EPSMG).
It is anticipated that the center will become the vehicle for Liberia’s partners and stakeholders, serving as a frontline defense to guard against future outbreaks and further empower the Liberian population in preventative care.
According to a press release, the Center for Excellence for Infectious Disease Control is a health care capacity building program established to prevent, treat, and control infectious diseases as part of Liberia’s post-Ebola recovery.
The Administrator of the JFK Medical Center, Dr. Wvannie Scott-McDonald, said the project has four key objectives, including capacity building, clinical care, research as well as advocacy and awareness.
Dr. McDonald noted that the center will mobilize resources and expertise and contributions of diverse partners from national and international academic institutions, bilateral and multilateral donors, African partners and NGOs, amongst others.
She said as a collaborative platform, the center will seek to develop skills and infrastructure to promote excellence in diagnosis, management, and prevention of infectious diseases through clinical care, education and training, research, and advocacy.
The center will be linked to the College of Medicines, the Post Graduate Medical Institute, Liberia College of Physician and Surgeons, the School of Nursing, School of Physician Assistants and other training facilities in the country.
Dr. McDonald said the center will also serve as a resource for in-service trainings of health workers with outreach throughout the 15 counties.
For his part, the Country Manager of Chevron Liberia Limited, Karl Cottrell said, when Chevron entered into partnership with the people of Liberia in 2010, it made a commitment to help overcome some of the country’s health challenges.
In particular they made a commitment to focus on Mother Child Health care and, working with partners like JKF, Redemption Hospital, Grand Bassa Hospital, St. Joseph’s Hospital, Kingdom Care, Benson’s Hospital and other health institutions across Liberia, progress was being made in this critical area.
Mr. Cottrell said today, Chevron clearly recognizes the impact that Ebola has had on the health sector and, with the signing of this grant agreement, Chevron along with the other contributors to the Liberian Center of Excellence for Infectious Disease Control, wishes to move Liberia past the goal of “Zero is Achievable” towards a bigger goal of “Zero is Sustainable”, not only for Ebola but against other common infectious diseases that impact lives of every Liberian daily.
“We hope that the support, commitment, partnership and dedication demonstrated during Ebola eradication will continue during execution of this post Ebola signature health project. Today, I hope that each of you here will join with Chevron in supporting the Liberia Center of Excellence for Infectious Disease Control. There are certainly several ways in which you can express your support’’, Mr. Cottrell added. Press Release