In line with POEA MC 07/2014 of Aug 11, 2014 Crew changes in ports of countries affected by EBOLA VIRUS DISEASE (EVD) are suspended until further notice. At the moment those countries are Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone but whenver a country is declared EBOLA affected by the World Health Organization (WHO) this will country will be added to the list. Also shore leave in those countries will no longer be allowed.
While the vast majority of ships manned by Avior do not call at ports affected by Ebola, Avior will include a briefing on Ebola and its prevention in its Pre Departure Orientation seminar.
Some useful links on EBOLA and its prevention you can find below:
For POEA guidelines on preventing EBOLA, Click Here
For DOH Ebola Advisory (Tagalog Version), Click Here
For World Health Organization Ebola Fact Sheet No 103, Click Here
Ebola virus disease (EVD), or simply Ebola, was first reported in 1976 in Africa. It is a viral illness that manifests with bleeding and kills around 90% of those afflicted. Since its outbreak last March 25 most of the fatalities are from Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone all in West Africa. There has already been one reported death in Nigeria.
The spread of disease is via contact with the skin or the body fluids of an infected animal or individual. It is not spread through air unlike other infections such as flu or measles. An infected person presents with symptoms no different from a typical viral infection: high fever, headache, joint pain, weakness, sore throat, and loss of appetite would occur. When the disease worsens, the patient would bleed from the eyes, ears, and nose, and in others, they may vomit blood or pass blood‐stained stools. They would also experience severe pain in the skin, swelling of the genitalia, and bloody rashes over their whole body.
NO CURE YET
There is no known treatment for Ebola. Management is only supportive, with the patient given blood or platelet transfusion if bleeding is noted. Medications to relieve its other symptoms, and fluids are given to prevent it from subsequently causing shock.
Death by Ebola is painful and deprives one the dignity of a normal burial due to its high susceptibility.
The World Health Organization on Friday, August 8 declared this latest Ebola outbreak in West Africa to be an international public health emergency requiring extraordinary response to stop its spread.
Here in the Philippines, the Department of Health says that there is no record of Ebola in humans. However they are vigilantly monitoring Filipinos who return from Africa for possible infection.
For its part, the Philippine Overseas and Employment Agency, in its Ebola prevention guidelines stated that until further notice, Filipino seafarers passing by Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone ports will not be allowed to go on shore leave.
WHAT WE CAN DO
Measures to minimize the possibility of infection is like any disease for that matter: observe proper hygiene and regularly washing the hands would prevent spread of the virus, avoid close contact with feverish of ill persons, avoid contact with animals, cook food thoroughly before consumption, seek medical advice promptly if symptoms of fever, vomiting, diarrhea, rash or bleeding develop, and advise doctor of travel history, and minimizing stress and getting enough rest and sleep help maintain a healthy immune system.
Avoid travel to affected areas i.e.: Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Nigeria.