CDC in Liberia

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) began collaborating with the government of Liberia in 2007 with the launch of the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI). In 2014, CDC expanded its presence to support the government of Liberia’s Ebola outbreak response. As Liberia continues to recover from the epidemic, CDC remains committed to supporting and strengthening the Ministry of Health (MoH) and partners.
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Travelers’ Health Liberia

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Liberia at a Glance

Population: 4,503,000
Per capita income: $820
Life expectancy at birth women/men: 61/59 yrs
Infant mortality rate: 54/1000 live births
Sources: PRB 2015 World Population Data Sheet

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Top 10 Causes of Death

Source: WHO Country Health Profiles 2015: Liberia

  1. Diarrheal Diseases
  2. HIV/AIDS & tuberculosis
  3. Cardiovascular diseases
  4. NTDs & malaria
  5. Neonatal disorders
  6. Neoplasms
  7. Diabetes/Urological/Blood/Endocrine
  8. Unintentional injuries
  9. Maternal disorders
  10. Cirrhosis

What CDC is Doing

  • More than 120 students have graduated from Liberia’s Field Epidemiology Training Program and are now working all over Liberia to quickly contain outbreaks at their source.

CDC has assigned a resident advisor to Liberia as part of an interagency team with USAID to support the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare in implementing malaria prevention and control interventions. These include providing long-lasting insecticide mosquito nets and indoor residual spraying; preventing malaria in pregnancy; improving diagnostics and case management; surveillance, and monitoring and evaluation of malaria-related activities.

CDC technical support has included dedicated diagnostic technical assistance visits to support the efforts of the National Malaria Control Program (NMCP) to rationalize treatment guidelines and improve the rollout of malaria diagnostics. Another goal is to improve entomologic capacity by providing equipment, supplies, and mentoring for NMCP entomologic technicians, in particular surveillance equipment to determine species distribution and mosquito densities and training for insecticide resistance through the CDC bottle bioassay testing.

CDC, in collaboration with its partners, provides technical and financial support to Liberia for polio eradication and measles pre-elimination activities. CDC has deployed 30 public health professionals to work in Liberia on immunization activities through the Stop the Transmission of Polio program since the program began in 1999.
When Ebola forced the suspension of the 2014 measles campaign, the resulting immunity gap led to the largest measles outbreak in Liberia in years. Liberia has begun a systematic community outreach campaign to restore vaccination rates.

In March 2014, the largest known Ebola outbreak in history began in West Africa, primarily affecting Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone. Liberia reported more than 10,600 cases and 4,800 deaths 1. CDC and its partners helped establish emergency operations centers to coordinate the response to Ebola and future health threats. Response activities also included:

  • Identifying people sick with Ebola and monitoring their contacts,
  • Implementing effective infection prevention and control measures,
  • Designing and delivering strategies for health promotion, and
  • Providing guidance and resources to help strengthen laboratory systems.

CDC supports the Liberia MoH’s Men’s Health Screening Program, which provides screening and counseling services for male Ebola survivors. The program educates men and women on how to reduce the risk of sexual transmission of the Ebola virus. With growing information suggesting that Ebola virus can stay in the body of a survivor for more than a year, the screening program is an important effort to control future outbreaks.

CDC is also partnering with Liberia under the Global Health Security Agenda to develop essential systems to prevent, detect, and respond to outbreaks. Working closely with the MoH and in-country partners, CDC supports efforts to build surveillance systems that monitor cases of infectious diseases, improve the safety and quality of national laboratory systems, develop the skills of the public health workforce, and establish emergency operations centers that can launch a quick, coordinated response to a public health thr eat. This work helps improve the world’s ability to stop outbreaks before they become epidemics.

1 https://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/outbreaks/2014-west-africa/case-counts.html

CDC Ebola Updates
Ebola outbreak

Latest Outbreak Info
The 2014-2015 Ebola epidemic is the largest in history, affecting multiple countries in West Africa. Worldwide, the World Health Organization has reported 28,637 casesof Ebola and 11,315 deaths. CDC and partners are working together to stop the epidemic…

Page last reviewed: July 6, 2017
Content source: Global Health