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Strengthening Health Care Workers’ Ebola Infection Prevention Skills in Guinea

Baltimore, MD—Jhpiego, an international health non-profit and affiliate of Johns Hopkins University, and Alcoa Foundation today announced a new partnership to provide infectious disease preparedness training for health care workers in the Boké Region in western Guinea.

The new, 4-month project will train 118 health care providers and provide supportive supervision and on-the-job mentoring in three health facilities in Boké Region that serve 207,000 Guineans.

This partnership between Jhpiego and Alcoa Foundation will build on and complement efforts begun earlier this year to contain and prevent the spread of Ebola in the West African country. The U.S. Agency for International Development’s flagship Maternal and Child Survival Program, which is led by Jhpiego, has been working with the government of Guinea to strengthen infection prevention and control (IPC) skills of more than 3,000 health workers to help stop the transmission of Ebola and to improve the overall safety of health care providers and patients.

“We welcome this initiative that is in line with our objective to strengthen the capacity of health facilities for infection prevention and control to ensure the quality of services and to better prepare for potentially epidemic diseases,”said Dr. Sékou Condé, National Director of Health Facilities and deputy coordinator of Guinea’s Ebola response.

Jhpiego, with offices in Conakry, has been working in partnership with the Ministry of Health for more than a decade to prevent the needless deaths of women and their families and to improve the quality of health care services in maternal and child health, family planning, IPC and postabortion care.

“Jhpiego is pleased to be partnering with Alcoa Foundation to share our innovative IPC approaches with yet another quadrant of health care providers in Guinea,” said Dr. Leslie Mancuso, President and CEO of Jhpiego. “We thank Alcoa Foundation for their commitment to the health and safety of nurses, midwives and other health professionals and their patients.”

“Healthcare providers have been particularly impacted by the advance of the Ebola virus, which has severely challenged health systems in Guinea. That’s why Alcoa Foundation is collaborating with Guinea’s Ministry of Health and Jhpiego to help train and support those providers to halt the transmission of Ebola,” said Esra Ozer, President, Alcoa Foundation. “This program will help to ensure that country’s most vulnerable are administered the care they need by well-trained and equipped healthcare providers.”

In partnership with local and international non-profit organizations, Alcoa Foundation supports community development initiatives in Guinea to address community needs. Projects focus on improving health care, education, environmental sustainability and conservation, gender diversity and capacity building. In 2014, the Foundation provided support for communication and outreach programs to educate the public and health care workers in Guinea on how to reduce their risk of exposure to the Ebola virus, and resources to support case identification, tracking and prevention of further spread of the disease.

About Alcoa Foundation

Alcoa Foundation is one of the largest corporate foundations in the U.S., with assets of approximately $480 million. Founded 63 years ago, Alcoa Foundation has invested more than $615 million. In 2014, Alcoa Foundation contributed more than $22 million to non-profit organizations throughout the world, building innovative partnerships to improve the environment and educate tomorrow’s leaders for careers in manufacturing and engineering. For more information, visit alcoafoundation.com and follow @AlcoaFoundation on Twitter.

About Alcoa in Guinea

Alcoa operates in Guinea as a 45% shareholder of Halco Mining, a company that owns 51% of Compagnie des Bauxites de Guinée (CBG). CBG, with the other 49% of which is owned by the Government of Guinea, has exclusive rights to mine bauxite in Guinea’s Sangaredi Plateau. In addition to mining in Sangaredi, CBG operates a port in Kamsar for drying and shipping bauxite to refineries worldwide.

About Jhpiego

For more than 40 years and in over 155 countries, Jhpiego has empowered front-line health workers by designing and implementing effective, low-cost, hands-on solutions to strengthen the delivery of health care services for women and their families. For more information, go to www.jhpiego.org and follow @Jhpiego on Twitter.