News / Health

US ‘Surging’ 50 Disease Control Specialists to West Africa

  • According to local reports, the sale of water buckets has increased dramatically because they are used by Liberians to wash their hands with disinfectant to prevent the spread of the deadly Ebola virus, Monrovia, Liberia, Aug. 4, 2014.
  • The representative from Guinea is absent for the opening session of the US-Africa Leaders Summit. The leaders of Guinea and Sierra Leone skipped the summit to deal with the ebola crisis at home, in Washington, DC, Aug. 4, 2014. 
  • The Mideast's largest airline, Emirates, says that it is stopping flights to Guinea until further notice because of concerns about the spread of the Ebola virus, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Aug. 3, 2014.
     
  • A man sells clothes as he walks past people reading comments on a blackboard that informs the public of current events in Liberia, including information on the Ebola virus, in Monrovia, Liberia, Saturday Aug. 2, 2014. 
  • Women from different religious groups wash their hands after praying to prevent the spread of the Ebola virus, in Monrovia, Liberia, Aug. 2, 2014. 
  • Members of the media wait in front of Emory University Hospital after an ambulance carrying the American doctor Kent Brantly, who has contracted the Ebola virus, arrived in Atlanta, Georgia, Aug. 2, 2014. 

Ebola Developments

Victor Beattie

The United States is sending at least 50 disease-control specialists to West Africa to help find, respond to and stop the spread of the deadly Ebola virus, which has claimed more than 700 lives. An American health care worker, who contracted the disease in Liberia, is expected to return to the United States Tuesday, following the return of an infected American doctor August 2.

The director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Tom Frieden, told US broadcast interviewers Sunday that while the Ebola outbreak in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia is currently out of control, it can be contained.

"What we’re doing now at CDC is surging our response. We are going to put at least 50 public health experts in the three countries in the next 30 days because, actually, we do know how to stop Ebola. It’s old-fashioned, plain-and-simple public health; find the patients, make sure they get treated, find their contacts, track them, educate people, do infection-control in hospitals. You do those things, and you have to do them really well, and Ebola goes away," said Frieden.

Frieden said the impact of an Ebola outbreak on a society can be devastating.

"It can destroy not just the confidence in health care, but have huge social and economic impacts on society. In parts of Africa, where we’ve dealt with Ebola for years, we’re much better able to control it. We find the cases quickly, we stop them quickly, and we prevent the practices that may allow it to spread. That’s what eventually we will be able to do here. The sooner we do it, the fewer people will die from it," Frieden said.

He said that a vaccine against Ebola is a long way away, and, for now, the best way to contain it is to stop it at its source, namely West Africa. He cautions it will neither be quick nor easy, and he expects the situation to worsen before it gets better.

The World Health Organization says more than 700 people have died from the disease since it was first detected in Guinea in March.

Frieden said Kent Brantly, who became infected while treating patients in Liberia and returned to the United States Saturday aboard a specially-equipped private jet, is improving at Atlanta’s Emory University Hospital.

A second infected American, missionary Nancy Writebol, who also contracted the virus in Liberia, is expected to be transported to Emory Tuesday.

On Friday, President Obama said US officials are taking the situation very seriously.

"As soon as there is an outbreak in the world of any disease that could have significant effects, the CDC is in communication with the World Health Organization and other multi-lateral agencies to try to make sure that we’ve got an appropriate response. This has been a more aggressive outbreak of Ebola than we’ve seen in the past, but keep in mind that it is still affecting parts of three countries," said Obama.

Obama said U.S. officials are taking “appropriate precautions” in screening African delegations in Washington for a three-day US/Africa summit. Some 50 African heads of state are attending the summit. Two invited African leaders, from Sierra Leone and Liberia, canceled their participation due to the Ebola crisis.

Friday, the WHO announced a $100-million emergency plan in conjunction with the three affected countries that includes a strengthening of control and response measures. A WHO spokesman said some 600 specialists will be needed to carry it out.

An estimated 2400 volunteers from the International Red Cross Federation have been working in all three countries since the outbreak began.

Meanwhile, Dubai-based Emirates became the first major international airline to suspend all flights to Guinea to prevent the spread of Ebola. It will continue flights to Dakar, Senegal, which borders Guinea. Several carriers and airports are screening passengers from the region for the illness. 

You May Like

Israelis Quietly Expand Enclave in Palestinian District of Jerusalem

Estimated 500 settlers, armed or protected by paramilitary police, live in Silwan among 50,000 Palestinians More

Video US, Iran Face Similar Challenges in Syrian Fight Against IS

Both Washington, Tehran back fighters battling Islamic State militants in Iraq -- but in Syria they support opposing sides in country’s civil war More

China Boosts Efforts to Help Afghan, Regional Stability

Observers say China’s increased regional involvement are due to concerns that Afghan instability and the presence of anti-China militants in Pakistani border areas could fuel Xinjiang troubles More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: eusebio manuel vestias from: Portugal
August 05, 2014 12:13 PM
west Africa save America


by: meanbill from: USA
August 04, 2014 10:13 AM
DON'T WORRY about (EBOLA) spreading worldwide, the world heath organization said just (2) weeks ago, (like AIDS), it keeps on spreading, and spreading, and is becoming a worldwide epidemic.... DON'T WORRY?..... how many people have (AIDS) worldwide?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid