MOH News
Dr. Tamara Named Leader of the Ebola Response Team
04 December 2014
Dr. Anees Sindi, Deputy Commander of the Ministry of Health’s (MOH) Command and Control Center (CCC), announced today that he has named Dr. Tamara Tayeb to serve as the CCC’s Ebola “champion” to focus the organization’s efforts related to the disease.

Dr. Tamara’s designation formalizes a role she has been playing within the CCC for some time. It also embodies the importance the Kingdom attaches to Ebola preparedness. While the overall risk to the Kingdom from Ebola remains low, it is necessary for the Kingdom’s healthcare system to be on alert and fully prepared for the possibility of infection. Equally important, the public, particularly those traveling abroad, should be aware of the symptoms of the disease and what to do should they develop symptoms.

“Preventing the prevalence of Ebola in Saudi Arabia is a high priority for our nation and our healthcare community,” Dr. Sindi said. “In spite of its low-probability occurrence, still it is one that carries high potential risk. Dr. Tamara is, has been and will continue to serve as our advocate for best practices in the preparation, detection and response to the possibility of Ebola, and will serve as our liaison with our international partners to assure the safety of patients, healthcare workers and the public at large.”
As the Ebola champion, Dr. Tamara will be responsible for ensuring that the Kingdom is prepared to respond effectively to any Ebola-specific health threats. Focusing exclusively on the disease, she will coordinate and drive the work of all CCC platforms and external parties, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), to develop and implement solutions that serve and protect the people of Saudi Arabia.
Dr. Tamara, it is noteworthy, is a public health expert who has served in the Ministry of Health’s (MOH) Communicable Diseases Directorate since 2012 as its director of the National Tuberculosis Control Program. She received her medical training at the prestigious Guy’s Hospital and St. Thomas’ Hospital in London; Ain Shams University Hospitals in Cairo, Egypt; and University Hospital Aintree in Liverpool, England, and earned her M.B., B.CH. of Medicine at Misr University for Science and Technology. Dr. Tamara also holds an MSc in Global Health and Development from University College London. She has been the leader of the CCC Public Health Platform since early 2014 and played a leading role in developing the response plan for Ebola at Hajj 1435.

The CCC has been tracking Ebola as a health threat soon after the initial reports of the outbreak in Western Africa, and particularly during the 1435-Hajj season, when there was heightened watchfulness that a pilgrim could inadvertently bring the virus into Saudi Arabia. In the wake of infection events in the United States and Spain, the CCC led the national effort to develop a comprehensive preparedness and support plan to counter the potential for Ebola infection.

The Ministry of Health launched the Command & Control Center in June 2014 under the direct supervision of His Excellency, the Minister of Health, in conjunction with international experts and organizations, such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The center comprises clinicians, scientists, researchers, healthcare experts and emergency planning experts, and provides the Ministry with the ability and capacity to real-time monitor developing health concerns across the Kingdom, and ensure that health challenges are managed with a systematic, holistic and comprehensive approach. The CCC initially was established in the wake of the MERS-CoV outbreak to ensure that the Ministry of Health is able to better respond rapidly, effectively and in a coordinated manner to any health threat.

For more information about ways to prevent, prepare for and seek treatment for Ebola, contact the infectious disease hotline (937).

Last Update : 07 December 2014 01:46 PM
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