Search

Holloway medic travels to Sierra Leone to help tackle deadly Ebola

09:53 02 September 2014

Rebecca Stretch

Rebecca Stretch

Archant

A Holloway woman is risking her life by travelling to west Africa to help prevent the spread of the Ebola virus.

Rebecca Stretch, who specialises in the prevention and control of infectious diseases for Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust, travelled to Kemena in Sierra Leone last month to teach people in hospitals how to deal with the spread of the virus which has so far killed more than 1,500 people.

Rebecca volunteered in Sierra Leone in 2002 during the Civil War in the country, and is putting her self in harms way again to help others.

But she says she was more afraid to tell her family than she is of contracting the disease.

Rebecca, originally from Carnforth in Lancashire, said, “I was more worried about telling my family about this trip than the trip itself.

“They will worry about me. But my main interest is communicable diseases – it’s what I’m trained in.

“For me, this is the equivalent of training as a footballer and then being ‘called up’ to play in the biggest tournament.

“I know that will sound odd to people. I can’t really explain it – but it’s what I am trained to do.”

Ebola is transmitted from person-to-person by direct contact with the bodily fluids of someone with the disease.

Rebecca plans to use her expertise to stop the disease, and says she feels duty bound because of her knowledge, to help.

“I think if somebody doesn’t help people there, then who will?” She said.

“We can’t just put a fence up and ignore the problem. It is dangerous but I am not reckless.

“I think I will be safe but things can go wrong even if you take the right precautions.

“Last time I went to Sierra Leone it was one of the most dangerous places on earth and I couldn’t go as far east as Kemena as it was too unsafe.

“This time is different – it is not a case of people purposefully harming people but a disease and all the suffering that brings.

“The last thing you’ll feel like when you get home is a hero“

Rebecca will be in Sierra Leone for a month.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Islington Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Islington Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Islington Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest News Stories

East Village nightclub in Great Eastern Street

A Shoreditch nightclub was used as a front to launder at least £12.3m made from prostitution.

Fabian Downie

A pervert who performed a solo sex act on six London buses, including one in Old Street, has been jailed.

Yesterday, 11:52
Residents protest outside the town hall on Thursday

Group home residents have one week until they are “decanted” from property

Yesterday, 08:15
Mayor of London Boris Johnson is lending his support to KIDS' summer spacehopper campaign

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has put his weight behind a campaign which will raise much needed funds for an Islington charity that helps disabled children and young people.

Most read news

Competitions

Good times with Greenall's!

Good times with Greenall’s, a Great British gin sponsors Great British racing.

Escape to the picturesque sights of Cornwall

Summer is finally here, and what is the number one holiday location in the UK during the warmer months? Cornwall, of course!

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Islington Gazette e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder