Building Capacity in Specialized Clinical Care Post-Ebola

While Liberia’s 2014-2015 Ebola epidemic has passed, the challenges rebuilding the public health system and addressing system constraints persist. In addition, many survivors exhibit a range of ophthalmic, psychiatric, and rheumatologic conditions, including uveitis, post-traumatic stress disorder, and arthralgia. Although they had access to basic health services and generalists, clinical specialists and advanced services were limited, especially to those living outside of Montserrado county. I

Mental Health Services Come to Liberia

There are myriad barriers to mental health care in Liberia, including the severe deficit of trained health workers with expertise in mental health and high levels of stigma experienced by individuals with mental health conditions at the community and health facility levels. The USAID-funded Ebola Transmission Prevention & Survivor Services (ETP&SS) program, implemented by the Advancing Partners & Communities project, supported a post-basic mental health training program at the Phebe Paramedical

Surviving a Long Road to Recovery

“2014 was a year I’ll never forget,” recounts Jimaima, with tears in her eyes. That was the year that Ebola caused her life to spiral out of control. A mother of four and a first-year physician’s assistant trainee at the Tubman National Institute of Medical Arts, Jimaima was interning at the John Yekeh Memorial Clinic in Monrovia. Her ordeal began when she treated her brother-in-law, who, unbeknownst to anyone, had contracted the Ebola virus disease (EVD). He died shortly thereafter, and soon e

Dear Salone, We See You!

Sierra Leone, affectionately called Salone, has always felt somewhat like home to me. I’ve had a strong connection to the country, although I only visited it briefly as a child refugee, when my family and I transited there, while fleeing from the 1996 civil war in Liberia. Rebels stormed Liberia’s capital, Monrovia, and our only means of escape was Victory Reefer, a cargo ship. We were aboard the ship for three long days. We hadn’t planned for this journey and took along none of our belongings.

#LIBTAKEOVER: A Reflection

A week before the 26th of July, Liberia’s independence day, a storm hit Social Media. The indomitable storm that was #libtakeover could not be ignored as I scrolled down my Facebook and Twitter news feeds. As the hashtag depicts, I too was taken over by admiration upon reading the numerous Liberian colloquialisms and parables; some old and others new, all bore a semblance of uniqueness and humor about them – a uniqueness Liberians have come to be known for. Throughout that week, it became a fron

Celebrate Women, Celebrate!

For so long, we were torn apart Our voices were buried in the cold dark earth, Our songs were cries and our rain, tears. We were silenced and banned from speaking our truths. Hate towards each other burdened us, We were blinded by lies that tore our efforts into shreds. wallow in sorrow and rejoice over each other’s downfall. Our hope was lost and our courage killed. In all this misery, something happened; on that fateful day, the scales fell from our eyes and we could suddenly see the

Two poems on what it’s like to live with Ebola, climate change

The two women live in different parts of the world: one on a tropical island in the Pacific, another in a former war-torn African country now fighting Ebola. Their lives are very different but they chose the same way to express their anguish and hopes for their situation: through poetry. Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner, 26, was born in Majuro, capital of the Marshall Islands. The low-lying island chains in the Pacific Ocean are about halfway between Hawaii and Australia. The population, numbering about

A Begging Christmas: 10 Ways to Celebrate Christmas, Liberian Style

Hilarious is one word that best describes Christmas time in Liberia; there are so many interesting things to see and places to go. The nation's capital Monrovia, comes alive during this time of year with lots of petty trading, singing, shopping, cooking and entertainment everywhere. One needs to be thoroughly schooled before choosing to spend their Christmas in Africa's Lone Star. Below are 10 things the discerning traveler/tourist should look forward to when visiting the country during the hol