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‘Touching is part of our profession’ …says clinic coordinator

February 10, 2015 

Planned Parenthood Association Sierra Leone’s (PPASL) reproductive health clinic at 2 Wesley Street in Freetown is one healthcare provider which continues to deliver services, to HIV carriers, and family planning, while other had shut down when the Ebola outbreak was at its peak.

Speaking to the clinic coordinator, Nursing Sister Sylvia Ogwari says touching patients was part of their profession, to physically check the body temperature of patients. She says theirs was a profession of passion, but conceded that the Ebola outbreak has forced them to lose their compassionate feelings because of the high  rate among health workers.

“Even the patients are afraid,” she admitted adding that they cannot perform comprehensive checks on pregnant women without touching, although they now wear full Personal Protective gears.

But she said great precaution was being taken even with pregnant women are in labour, including following universal procedures of wearing gloves, apron and washing of hands before checking patients with other cases.

She also said that all patients are thoroughly screened, counseled and asked  technical questions, as a way of preventing against the deadly Ebola virus, noting that information and education was part of their daily routine.

She said family planning is also one aspect of reproductive health service they offer to both men and women in the area of fertility and counseling on sexual activities for reproduction.

Lactating mother, Mabinty Saffa, confirmed PPASL provides one of the best service in the capital, and commended health workers at the facility for treating their patients with great care and professionalism.

PPASL is one of the leading health service providers in the country, and provides services including family planning, safe motherhood, STI prevention and management, HIV counseling and testing.

This institution also provides services in growth monitoring and integrated management of childhood illnesses, infertility management, menopausal counseling and management, male sexual reproductive healthcare, laboratory, gender-based violence services and referrals.

Its behaviour change communication programmes target community leaders, police and army personnel as well as Muslim and Christian groups.

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