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19 décembre 2014 5 19 /12 /décembre /2014 17:45
British Army medic returns from training in fight against Ebola

19 déc. 2014 British Army


Private Danielle Pattinson, of 35 Squadron 5 Armoured Medical Regiment, has recently returned from Sierra Leone where she has been training Sierra Leonean healthcare workers and volunteer hygienists in the fight against Ebola.

The Army medic from Barrow-in-Furness was one of more than 40 personnel who successfully completed their task at the Ebola Training Academy, which they established at the National Stadium in Freetown.

Their task was to train people in the use of protective personal equipment, which would protect them from coming into bodily contact with Ebola sufferers, allowing them to administer care to the sick and dying with minimal risk to themselves.

Danielle said: “I’m so glad to be home for Christmas. We weren’t sure how long we were going to be out there for until the last minute. They did say we could be anything between two and six months, so a lot of us had prepared to be out there for Christmas, so it was a nice surprise to be told that we were coming back.”

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4 novembre 2014 2 04 /11 /novembre /2014 12:50
Photo : Jürgen Braekevelt

Photo : Jürgen Braekevelt


03/11/2014 Virginie Flawinne – MIL.be


Un passager venant du Sierra Leone a déclenché la procédure Ebola à l’aéroport de Zaventem ce lundi 3 novembre 2014. Il présentait des symptômes de la fièvre hémorragique de type Ebola, et a été immédiatement isolé et transféré à l’hôpital Saint-Pierre grâce à une ambulance spéciale de la Défense. Récemment adapté pour le transfert de patient hautement infectieux, ce véhicule est unique en Belgique. 


Afin de faire face à une éventualité telle que l’alerte de ce lundi matin, le SPF Santé Publique a mandaté la Défense qui a entièrement adapté une de ses ambulances. « Nous sommes habitués au transport difficile de patients, avec le service des grands brûlés de l’hôpital militaire », explique le médecin capitaine urgentiste Pierre-Jean Mallieu. « Sans compter que, grâce aux opérations, nous travaillons déjà avec des dangers de contamination chimique et biologique. »


« Nous avons transformé un brancard en une chambre d’isolement portable, ce qui nous permet de transporter le patient sans risque de contamination de l’air », ajoute l’adjudant-chef Jan Vaes. Grâce à la modification de cette ambulance, tout patient présentant des symptômes de la fièvre hémorragique pourra être transféré dans un des hôpitaux de référence : Saint-Pierre à Bruxelles et les hôpitaux universitaires de Louvain et Anvers.


La Défense avait réalisé des exercices avec ces hôpitaux afin que tous les acteurs se préparent à la procédure. La réactivité de ce lundi matin a démontré l’utilité de cette proactivité. L’ambulance, unique en Belgique, accroît la sécurité et limite fortement toute contamination avant l’arrivée du patient en zone de quarantaine.

Vidéo : Wim Cochet, Clint Soete

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23 octobre 2014 4 23 /10 /octobre /2014 16:45
More UK troops deploy to Sierra Leone (21 oct.)


21 October 2014 Ministry of Defence and Department for International Development


Around 150 British Army personnel left RAF Brize Norton this morning to add to the significant UK efforts to tackle Ebola.


The soldiers, mostly medics from 35 Squadron, 5 Medical Regiment of the Royal Army Medical Corps, are due to arrive in Freetown, Sierra Leone, later today.

They will run the Ebola Training Academy – teaching local healthcare workers and hygienists how to protect themselves from infection and how to prevent it in others.

Also deploying today were soldiers from the Queen’s Own Gurkha Logistic Regiment and 1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland.

Travelling to Sierra Leone with UK troops was International Development Secretary Justine Greening. She will visit a treatment facility in Kerry Town and a DfID-funded Ebola Training Academy.

Major General Tim Radford, the General Officer Commanding Force Troops Command – in charge of most of the deploying troops – was on hand in the early hours to wish his personnel well on their deployment.

He said:

This is the third group of soldiers who have deployed to Sierra Leone in support of the DfID operation to help tackle the crisis.

They will join more than 300 soldiers who arrived over a month ago and have been instrumental in setting up the infrastructure and treatment facilities across the west of the country.

General Tim Radford speaking to his soldiers
General Tim Radford speaking to his soldiers before their flight to Sierra Leone [Picture: Corporal Richard Cave RLC, Crown copyright]

Major General Radford continued:

These troops will form part of the group undertaking vital work to train Sierra Leonians to conduct community care in their own neighbourhoods in up to 1,000 centres across the whole country.

My personnel are confident, well-trained and now just want to get on with the job.

The departure is the latest deployment in a truly joint Defence operation to support the UK Aid mission. It follows the deployment of RFA Argus who sailed on Friday with personnel from all 3 services onboard.

RAF personnel are based at Accra, Ghana, moving equipment and personnel, and in Sierra Leone supporting the international aid effort.

Defence’s total contribution to the UK’s work to tackle Ebola in Sierra Leone will amount to around 750 personnel.

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9 octobre 2014 4 09 /10 /octobre /2014 07:45
Troops prepare for Sierra Leone Ebola duty

A doctor briefs his team during a training exercise [Picture: Graham Harrison, Crown copyright]


7 October 2014    Ministry of Defence, Department for International Development and The Rt Hon Mark Francois MP


Armed Forces Minister Mark Francois has praised military personnel going through medical training to help tackle Ebola in west Africa.


More than 100 members of the British Army’s 22 Field Hospital are preparing to provide a 12-bed treatment unit for healthcare workers in Sierra Leone.

Today, Mr Francois witnessed mission training at the Army Medical Services establishment in Strensall, which is designed to develop and assess the clinical and organisational procedures required.

Personnel carried out parts of the exercise in personal protective equipment in a hangar converted into a mock-up field hospital, treating simulated casualties to replicate the situation they expect to find when they deploy.

A medical technician tests blood samples
A medical technician tests blood samples during a training exercise [Picture: Graham Harrison, Crown copyright]

Mr Francois said:

The Ebola virus represents a global threat to public health and we will not stand idly by. The UK has been at the forefront of responding to the epidemic and our medics will continue the great work already carried out by the military engineers, planners, DFID and FCO representatives and NGOs.

This operation will involve a unique set of challenges, but I believe that our military medics, who we are extremely proud of, have the ability to provide support to the World Health Organisation in helping to bring the outbreak under control.

Military personnel will deploy to Sierra Leone next week where they will join military engineers and planners who have been in country for almost a month, overseeing the construction of the medical facilities.

A doctor briefs his team
A doctor briefs his team before ward rounds during a training exercise [Picture: Graham Harrison, Crown copyright]

Commander 2 Medical Brigade, Brigadier Kevin Beaton, said:

We have created a detailed mock-up of the environment we will be operating in once deployed, enabling our personnel to get used to the procedures they will have to undergo and their personal protective equipment, working in challenging conditions.

We believe this is a mission worth doing, and a risk worth taking to protect our people as we tackle Ebola.

The 12-bed facility is just one strand of the UK’s commitment to tackling Ebola. Using British expertise and local building contractors, the UK has pledged to establish the physical infrastructure for a total of 700 beds.

A team of over 40 military personnel, including logisticians, planners and engineers, are currently on the ground in Sierra Leone to oversee the construction of the UK’s facility near Freetown and develop sites for new facilities.

The UK will build at least 4 new Ebola treatment facilities near urban centres including Port Loko, Freetown, Makeni and Bo.

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