In Pakistan, HSP partners at the Association for Biorisk Management (ABM) conducted a biosafety training with twelve medical professionals and local community leaders from the Tehsil Tangi district of Charsadda, a community of more than 400,000 people. The training focused on biosafety and precautionary measures that can be used to stop community-based transmission of COVID-19, as well as trust building exercises between the two groups.
During the training, community leaders and medical staff were made aware of topics like biosafety, personal protection, and waste disposal; especially, proper disposal of the surgical masks that are used by the majority of the population. Measures that individuals can take to stop the spread of COVID-19 like social distancing, avoiding shaking hands, staying at home, avoiding crowded places, and frequent hand-washing with water and soap, were also discussed.
After the biosafety training portion, ABM then facilitated a dialogue between medical staff and the community leaders to build trust and ensure collective efforts will be made to complement the government’s efforts to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 in the district. At the end of the session, the community elders were highly satisfied and motivated to cooperate with medical staff to augment the disease control process.