Sierra Leone President Ernest Koroma rewards front-line health and non-health workers in the fight against Ebola with $18.2 MILLION incentive

Sierra Leone President - Ernest Bai Koroma

Sierra Leone President – Ernest Bai Koroma

In an exceptional act of appreciation for the bravery and dedication of front-line health and non-health workers in the fight against the deadly Ebola virus, the President of Sierra Leone has authorized  that $18.2 MILLION, through a programme partly funded by the government of Sierra Leone; the World Bank; the Global Fund; and the UN Population Fund, be made available as incentive to Eligible Health and non-health personnel. The Head of State continues to show outstanding leadership at this most difficult of times, and should be applauded for such a brilliant initiative which clearly demonstrates recognition of the effort and sacrifices made by those in the front-line to help defeat the menace of this deadly virus. In a statement released by the Ministry of Finance:

GOVERNMENT, THROUGH THE MINISTRIES OF FINANCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND HEALTH AND SANITATION, WITH THE CONCURRENCE OF THE EBOLA EMERGENCY OPERATIONS CENTRE (EOC), HEREBY ANNOUNCES THE APPROVAL OF AN AMOUNT OF LE82.1 BILLION EQUIVALENT TO US$18.2 MILLION FOR THE PAYMENT OF WEEKLY INCENTIVES TO ELIGIBLE HEALTH AND NON-HEALTH PERSONNEL TO ENHANCE THE FIGHT AGAINST THE EBOLA VIRUS DISEASE FOR AN INITIAL PERIOD OF SIX MONTHS EFFECTIVE 1ST SEPTEMBER 2014 TO 28TH FEBRUARY 2015 AS FOLLOWS:

No Category of Staff / No. of Personnel / Amount per person (Le)

1. Staff in Treatment Centers – 1,500 / Le.500,000 per week

2. Burial Team – 250 / Le.500,000 per week

3. Staff in Holding Centers – 438 / Le.400,000 per week

4. Staff in Laboratory – 80 / Le.400,000 per week

5. Staff in affected Communities – 8,000 / Le.200,000 per week

6 Contact Tracers – 2,100 / Le.100,000 per week

7 Screening Personnel – 240 / Le.100,000 per week

THIS PROGRAMME IS JOINTLY FUNDED BY GOVERNMENT, THE WORLD BANK, THE GLOBAL FUND AND THE UNITED NATIONS POPULATION FUND, WITH GOVERNMENT CONTRIBUTING AN AMOUNT OF LE29.7 BILLION.

THE PUBLIC IS HEREBY REMINDED THAT THE FUNDS BEING PROVIDED FOR INCENTIVES TO HEALTH WORKERS IS IN ADDITION TO FUNDS ALREADY PROVIDED BY GOVERNMENT TO HELP FIGHT THE EBOLA OUTBREAK. THIS PAYMENT WILL BE EFFECTED BY THE EOC THROUGH THE EMERGENCY RESPONSE EBOLA ACCOUNT HELD AT THE SIERRA LEONE COMMERCIAL BANK AND THE BANK OF SIERRA LEONE RESPECTIVELY. PAYMENTS WIL BE MADE TO BENEFICIARY STAFF BY DISTRICT MEDICAL OFFICERS IN EACH REGION.

THE DISTRICT MEDICAL OFFICERS WILL ASSUME FULL RESPONSIBILITY TO ACCOUNT FOR THE PAYMENTS TO PERSONNEL WITHIN THEIR JURISDICTION AND SUBMIT RETURNS TO THE MINISTRY OF FINANCE AND ECONMIC DEVELOPMENT THROUGH THE PERMANENT SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF HEALTH AND SANITATION, PROMPTLY TO FACILITATE TIMELY RELEASE OF FUNDS EACH WEEK.

IN THIS REGARD, A TOTAL AMOUNT OF LE 3 BILLION WILL BE RELEASED ON A WEELY BASIS TO DISTRICT MEDICAL OFFICERS WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT TO PAY INCENTIVES TO ELIGIBLE HEALTH WORKERS BEGINNING THE WEEK ENDING SEPTEMBER 6, 2014 .

FINALLY, PLANS ARE BEING FINALIZED TO PAY A LUMP SUM BENEFIT TO ALL EBOLA DISCHARGED PATIENTS AND TO ALL HEALTH PERSONNEL IN THE UNFORTUNATE OCCURRENCE OF DEATH. ALSO, STRONG EFFORTS ARE UNDERWAY TO PROVIDE APPROPRIATE PERSONAL PROTECTION GEAR TO ALL FRONTLINE HEALTH AND NON-HEALTH WORKERS.

THE CONTINUING COOPERATION OF THE GENERAL PUBLIC IS SOLICITED TO ASSIST GOVERNMENT EFFORTS IN THE FIGHT AGAINST THE EBOLA VIRUS DISEASE.

MATILDA WILLIAMS (MRS) SADIQ M. KAPUWA
FOR: FINANCIAL SECRETARY PERMANENT SECRETARY
MINISTRY OF FINANCE AND MINISTRY OF HEALTH AND
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT SANITATION

3RD SEPTEMBER 2014

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