Monday, August 4, 2014

Doctor in the infected area: Ebola punished every mistake brutal – Handelsblatt

Guéckédou How can you describe the smell of chlorine? Just as disinfectant? Chlorine-like? It know him any. During the last weeks in Guinea, he was so currently home to the smell of diapers my son – especially just as ambivalent: It stinks a bit, but that’s life. And in this case it’s about survival.

A special scent that we employees MSF currently and in Guinea, Liberia Sierra Leone apply. Before we sit down for breakfast, already smell our hands of chlorine. In each car a spray bottle is ready and when we enter the home, office or treatment center, we only show our shoe soles, which are then carefully sprayed. Then we disinfect hands again – again with chlorine

The Land Cruiser has to smell of chlorine, the clothes, especially the dishes, and actually even the salad leaves.. Once no chlorine solution came in the local health authority during my visit from the local donor. Although I had disinfected their hands in the car until three minutes before – could still smell it even, but I was nervous. Are they already showing signs of becoming crazy?

No. Hygiene and disinfection are vital principles in all Ebola projects of “Doctors Without Borders”. Self-protection is the essential prerequisite of help – and chlorine is its flavor

Since the beginning of Ebola spreads in West Africa.. The first cases were announced in March in the region of Guéckédou in Guinea, where I spent three weeks in use. Hundreds of people have died here in the past few months, probably only a small part in our treatment center, most with their families in remote villages.

Deadly is mainly the ignorance

For example Faya Conde ( changed all names ). He did during his last hours not know that he had two weeks earlier on infected a Motoradstunde south at the funeral of his cousin. Unfortunately, the suspect and his wife Mariam not who took care of him, not even his brother Tamber, who washed his body the next day, and certainly not Fanta, which was nursed by Mariam.

Also Tambers woman suspected nothing when at last her husband got a fever, no longer able to get up, then got diarrhea, diarrhea after bloody messes, then did not speak. She nursed him. Shortly after, she showed all the symptoms. All they share with so many people in West Africa, the fate of a fatal ignorance.

The neighbor from Tamber finally the emergency number in Guéckédou selected. “Doctors Without Borders” has sent a team, the “safe funerals” of people performing, which are regarded as Ebola suspected cases. From the buccal mucosa of Tambers dead woman’s hooded gravedigger who, as usual, carefully put a smear before she was buried two meters deep with chlorine solution Sprinkled corpse. The smear was positive. An Ebola case more in my stats.


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