Posted on Tuesday 3 November 2015
Paula Keelan (centre) receives the Ebola medal from Amanda Pritchard, Acting Chief Executive (left) and Sir Hugh Taylor, Chairman (right)
A biomedical scientist who works for Viapath, Guy’s and St Thomas’ pathology provider, has been awarded the Ebola Medal for Service in West Africa, for her contribution to the fight against the deadly disease.
Paula Keelan worked in Makeni, Sierra Leone, from 12 January to 18 February this year. She was part of a team of scientists at the Ebola Treatment Centre running tests to find out whether people attending the centre were suffering from Ebola or malaria. A positive result meant that the patient would go on to receive the care they needed.
Paula says: “Working in Sierra Leone was completely different to my normal job, and brought home all the reasons why what we do is so important.
“We were working really closely with the nurses and doctors in the treatment centre, so we got to know what was happening with each of the centre’s patients. If treatment was successful and the patient was allowed home, everyone started to sing and dance – it was amazing to see.”