CAF medical personnel were fighting against the Ebola epidemic with British forces in Sierra Leone
OTTAWA — The second group of Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) personnel on Operation SIRONA arrived in Ottawa today after deploying to West Africa in support of the Government of Canada’s response to fight the Ebola epidemic.
The return followed a detailed handover with the third group of CAF military doctors, nurses, medics, and support staff at the United Kingdom’s Kerry Town Treatment Unit in Sierra Leone. Among those returning is Lieutenant-Colonel Gary O’Neil who served as the Task Force’s first commander. Canadians continue to work alongside their British counterparts in providing essential medical care to local and international healthcare workers.
In providing much needed frontline care to patients in West Africa, CAF healthcare professionals are having a direct impact in the fight against the Ebola epidemic.
Operation SIRONA augments the United Kingdom’s Operation GRITROCK at the Kerry Town Treatment Unit in Sierra Leone. Canadian military healthcare personnel deployed on Operation SIRONA rotate every two months.
The CAF has provided a Task Force, including healthcare providers and support staff, since the initial rotation arrived in Sierra Leone on December 20, 2014.
The first wave of CAF personnel returned from Sierra Leone on March 6, 2015 and completed their 21-day post-deployment monitoring period without incident.
The medical personnel and support staff who returned to Ottawa today come from across the country.
CAF personnel deploying to Sierra Leone are expertly prepared. Before deploying to West Africa, CAF members train at the British Army Medical Services Training Centre in Strensall, UK, alongside their British military counterparts. Training includes lectures by experts in infectious disease, including Ebola, and by health workers with experience working in Sierra Leone; cultural awareness; and practical scenarios in a simulated Ebola treatment centre.
The third group of CAF members arrived in Sierra Leone on April 20, 2015
“Intensely trained and meticulously prepared, the sailors, soldiers, and airmen and women who have deployed on Op SIRONA in the service of the fight against the Ebola virus have our respect and gratitude.”
The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of National Defence
Department of National Defence
The second group of Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) personnel on Operation SIRONA arrived in Ottawa today after deploying to West Africa in support of the Government of Canada’s response to fight the Ebola epidemic.