Monrovia – A survey conducted by the Institute for Research and Democratic Development has revealed that the Ministry of Health and the National Public Health Institute’s day to day implementation strategy seem not to be aligned with the Liberia COVID-19 National Preparedness and Response Plan.
The Liberia COVID-19 National Preparedness and Response Plan calls for robust procurement and distribution of PPEs to health facilities across the country.
Addressing a press conference in Monrovia, IREDD Executive Director, Harold Aidoo, disclosed that more than 100 million United States Dollars has been received by the government either in the form of loans or grants from international partners but, how these monies are been applied to the fight against what is a global health scourge remains murky.
Mr. Aidoo pointed out that making maximum use of available resources by supporting every aspect of the National Preparedness and Response Plan will go a long way in ensuring that Liberia is ahead of the curve and sailing towards zero infection in the not too distant future.
According to Mr. Aidoo, 1.42% of health facilities sampled are without Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs); while those facilities with PPEs, each has received only one supply or donation of PPEs from private persons, private organizations or Government.
The survey revealed that private individuals and organizations donation account for 54% of all PPEs at health facilities within Montserrado County.
He noted that the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning has also been reticent in making available to the Liberian public up-to-date expenditures towards health services on COVID-19.
“This level of information irregularity presents a challenge to citizens and organizations interested in monitoring Government’s response to COVID-19 as to which ministry or agency of government to hold accountable for lapses in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic”.
Meanwhile, the IREDD Executive Director has advanced a four-count recommendation aimed at combating the spread of the coronavirus in the country.
Mr. Aidoo, among other things, recommended that the Ministry of Health ensures the regular and uninterrupted supply of PPEs to all health facilities in Liberia: public and private
He also proposed that the Ministry of Health and the National Public Health Institute of Liberia ensure that all health facilities throughout the country set aside and maintain an isolation center for suspected cases of COVID-19
According to him, the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning makes available to the public, on a weekly basis, disaggregated expenditure on COVID-19 per spending entity.
IREDD also recommended that the Incident Management Team be empowered to improve on its rate of response to suspected cases of coronavirus.