UK-Med is supporting the UK Emergency Medical Team response to the COVID-19 outbreak, as announced earlier today as part of a broader announcement of the UK’s response to the outbreak.
Working alongside the WHO, UK-Aid funded infectious disease experts are working in developing countries which have large urban populations and transport links to the UK and to China and other countries experiencing large outbreaks.
Two clinicians are working in both Ghana and South Africa to support the World Health Organisation and national Ministry of Health in both countries on COVID-19 preparedness efforts. Both team members are focusing on coordination, drafting and communication of COVID-19 preparedness and contingency planning.
Director-General of the World Health Organization Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said:
The United Kingdom’s support for the global response to the new coronavirus outbreak will protect the health of people in many parts of the world, from assisting countries with fragile health systems to fuelling the fight to find a vaccine. At this critical time in the battle against COVID-19, the WHO is grateful for the UK’s solidarity and commitment to keeping people safe at home and around the world.
You can read the latest WHO situational report here.
Dr Fredrick Mate arrived in Ghana in mid-February. A qualified medical doctor with specialization in Global Health and Management from Kenya, Dr Mate has over a decade of experience working on clinical, technical and administrative roles with the public healthcare system in Kenya, including as the Senior Medical Officer at Meru University of Science and Technology and previous experience with International Rescue Committee.
Since then Dr Mate has been working WHO and Ministry of Health colleagues on a number of activities. Along with Dr Lawrence who is the team leader on Case Management for Ghana Health Services, Dr Mate ran Infection Prevention and Control training to the Kotoka International Airport Health staff and Ambulance service drivers.
Last week, David Anderson travelled to South Africa. David has worked on number of outbreak responses for UK-Med, and joined the staff team in February as a Health Advisor. Since arriving in South Africa David has been working with WHO on a number of activities, attending an Emergency operations centre meeting in Johannesburg on Friday.
UK-Med are continuing to monitor the situation alongside partners and respond to subsequent requests for specific expertise and support, with further teams and specialists to be deployed in the coming weeks. There are no plans for a large-scale deployment of the UK EMT.
Thanks to our clinicians who have been ready to respond at short notice and everyone who has supported the teams to get out of the door. UK-Med is grateful for the continuing support of the Department for International Development, and proud to be part of the medical response to the outbreak, funded by UK Aid.