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Foreign Affairs, Government, Health Care, Health Disparities, Healthcare, Public Health, Uncategorized

WHO: Ebola Spreading ‘Intensely’ In Sierra Leone As Death Toll Rises

The toll in the Ebola epidemic has risen to 5,420 deaths out of 15,145 cases in eight countries, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday, with transmission of the deadly virus still “intense and widespread” in Sierra Leone.

The figures, through Nov. 16, represent a jump of 243 deaths and 732 cases since those issued last Friday, and cases continue to be under-reported, the WHO said in its latest update.

Sierra Leone, one of three countries hit hardest by the epidemic, confirmed 533 new cases in the week leading up to Nov. 16, WHO said, accounting for much of the overall increase. It also reported 63 additional deaths since last Friday. “Much of this was driven by intense transmission in the country’s west and north,” the WHO said. The capital Freetown, which accounted for 168 new confirmed cases, and nearby Port Loko were particularly hard-hit.

A Cuban doctor infected with Ebola in Sierra Leone is expected to be flown to Switzerland in the next 24 hours for hospitalization in Geneva, Swiss health authorities said on Thursday. He is the first Cuban known to have contracted the disease.

Meanwhile, the outbreaks in Guinea and Liberia currently appear to be driven by intense transmission in several key districts, the WHO said, citing N’Zerekore and Macenta in Guinea and Montserrado in Liberia, which includes the capital Monrovia.

Lack of treatment beds, personnel driving widespread transmission

In the three most affected countries – Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone – 1,159 beds are now operational in 18 Ebola treatment centers, or 25 percent of beds planned, according to the U.N. agency. But only 13 percent of Ebola patients in Sierra Leone are in isolation, its figures show.

Lack of available treatment beds has been cited as one of the primary factors driving transmission in Sierra Leone. While Sierra Leone accounts for almost two-thirds of new cases, there are only 288 beds spread across four Ebola Treatment Centers (ETCs) in the country.

Furthermore, the U.N. Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER) recently reported that an average of 50 percent of cases of the Ebola virus disease (EVD) are not being reported across Sierra Leone, so the majority of patients are not making into treatment units.

Authorities in Mali have reported 6 Ebola cases including five deaths, the WHO said. All contacts of its first case, a two-year-old girl who died in October, have survived the 21-day incubation period. The remaining cases have been in Nigeria, Senegal, Spain and the United States, where isolated clusters have broken out but have since been brought under control.

Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said on Wednesday that her government is gaining the upper hand in the fight against Ebola, but warned against complacency or any reduction in international support.  WHO said that in Liberia, 80 probable cases were reported in the week leading up to November 15. “Nationally, on average, between 10 and 20 laboratory-confirmed cases are being reported each day.”

Despite signs of progress in Liberia, the Red Cross warned last week that the outbreak is flaring up in “new villages and new locations” across West Africa, while recruiting volunteers to go to the affected region has become nearly impossible. Cautioning against complacency, Birte Hald, a representative of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies told the Associated Press: “It is absolutely premature to start being optimistic.”

 

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"Science is a way of thinking much more than it is a body of knowledge." -- Carl Sagan

Discussion

6 thoughts on “WHO: Ebola Spreading ‘Intensely’ In Sierra Leone As Death Toll Rises

  1. The world needs to kick itself up the arse and get more specialised help over there. More help is needed in finding a cure as the urgent mortality rates are unacceptable.
    Also if they can’t control and contain this horrible illness in Africa it’s bound to become pandemic from symptomless people travelling from the effected African countries to other countries round the globe and it will take root and strike firmly in the countries like those already infected due to poor hygiene, dirty water and lack of food, which leaves people too weak to fight Ebola off.

    Posted by Laiyla Lane | November 22, 2014, 12:14 am
    • Exactly. You are spot-on. I think the scariest future scenario — and one that seems to be increasingly likely with each passing day — is that Ebola will become endemic in West Africa, continuing to spur outbreaks indefinitely. And it certainly doesn’t have to be that way; we know how to fight these diseases, but long-standing economic and social inequalities are making that nearly impossible.

      Thank you for your comment! I hope you will keep reading — I plan to continue covering the outbreak as long as people are still dying needlessly.

      Posted by publichealthwatch | November 22, 2014, 1:35 am
      • I’ll be there reading alongside you!

        Posted by Laiyla Lane | November 22, 2014, 2:45 am
      • Awesome 🙂 And if you have any specific issues/topics/questions regarding Ebola that you are particularly interested in reading about or that you would like to see covered, I am ALWAYS open to feedback and would be happy to dive into more details on any of these issues. Thanks for reading 🙂

        Posted by publichealthwatch | November 22, 2014, 3:01 am
  2. Reblogged this on The Random Ramblings of Laiyla Lane and commented:
    The entire world has a reposisibility to find a cure and to curtail Ebola!

    Posted by Laiyla Lane | November 22, 2014, 2:57 am
  3. As-salaam alaikum By the will of Allah I have immunity against many infectious diseases. I have immunity against Ebola. By the will of Allah checked by a psychiatrist is quite adequate. At the request of the Administration of the President of Russia 2 times went to a psychiatric hospital. And thank God for the testimony of hospitalization were found.

    .Bolnoy Disabled 2 groups from childhood on two internal incurable disease By the will of Allah 17 years doing sports outdoors. Moonlighting distributor of newspapers in Almetjevsk. Sick not diabetes mellitus of other types. I drink a lot of water. On the recommendation of Allah saw on the Internet. Judging by the Internet can drink up to 20 liters of water a day, if not to take medicine. But Allah Almighty allowed me to take medicine. And with the permission of Allah, offer to make a vaccine against Ebola on my blood serum. PS. Since 2006, although not sick with influenza had often had the flu. Enter at risk as a distributor of newspapers .With Almighty Allah I have strong immunitet.Bely house and CDC sent letters to clarify I propose to make a vaccine for antibodies in my blood, not of my bloodphone +79046762574

    Posted by Rishat | November 22, 2014, 10:29 am

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