Ebola Not Yet Under Control, Says WHO

A new report released by the World Health Organisation, WHO, on Wednesday, 8 October, 2014, stated that the Ebola outbreak shows no signs of abating.

According to the report, the Ebola virus epidermic has killed no fewer than 3,879 people and threatens more Western African nations poorly equipped to deal with the disease.

The UN’s health authority also stated that a total of 8,033 people had caught the infection up to 5 October.

Liberia and Sierra Leone, the two worst-hit nations, had less than a quarter of the beds needed, the report added.

“The situation in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone continues to deteriorate, with widespread and persistent transmission of Ebola,” the organisation said.

“There is no evidence that the EVD epidemic in West Africa is being brought under control.”

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It said a reported fall in the number of new cases in Liberia was “unlikely to be genuine” and rather reflected how responders were being overwhelmed by data.

Meanwhile, Liberia’s president, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, said on Tuesday that international aid to battle the Ebola epidemic was arriving too slowly in her country.

“We just need to see a little bit faster action, that’s all. But certainly, in terms of resources both human and financial as well as material, I think the response is well appreciated and is very good. We would like to speed it up,” Sirleaf told the Reuters news agency.

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Burial workers ended a one-day strike in Sierra Leone over unpaid wages, which left contagious corpses of Ebola victims at homes and on the streets of the capital, Freetown.

Health workers in Liberia have also threatened to strike if their demands of a $700-a-month salary and safety equipment were not met by the end of the week.

Meanwhile, authorities in the US have announced that travellers from Ebola-affected countries will face increased security scrutiny at five major US airports.

Passengers from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea will have their temperatures taken and have to answer questions, reports informed.

The new measures at O’Hare in Chicago, JFK and Newark in the New York area, Washington’s Dulles, and Atlanta’s airport will begin in the coming days.

The increase in passenger testing comes after the first person diagnosed with Ebola on US soil died in Dallas on Wednesday.

Thomas Duncan travelled to the US from Liberia, and was only diagnosed with the disease once he arrived in Texas.

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A police officer who visited Mr Duncan’s home is now reported to have Ebola-like symptoms and has been taken to hospital as a precaution.

Frisco Mayor Maher Maso described the risk as “minimal”, but officials were taking “an abundance of caution”

Test results were expected back within about 48 hours, Mr Maso said.

Also, the World Bank estimated that the economic toll of the largest Ebola outbreak in history could reach $32.6bn if the disease continues to spread through next year.

Jim Kim, the president of the World Bank, urged western governments to back a new $20bn global health fund that would be able to react instantly to emergencies.

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