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Ebola Claimed 1st Victim a Year Ago

Ebola Claimed 1st Victim a Year Ago

It was a year ago that the Ebola crisis in West Africa that claimed its first victim, and the outbreak is likely to last until the end of 2015, said Peter Piot, director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and part of a team to discover Ebola in 1976.

“This will be an epidemic with a very long tail, and a bumpy tail. ... We need to be ready for a long effort, a sustained effort probably the rest of 2015,” Piot told the BBC on Wednesday.

On December 28, 2013, 2-year-old Emile Ouamouno died in the remote village of Meliandou in southern Guinea after suffering from a fever, headache and diarrhea. His 3-year-old sister, mother and grandmother died days later.

These deaths went unnoticed and the disease smoldered undetected, according to the WHO. It was not until March that health officials in Guinea started to realize something worrisome was happening.

As of Wednesday, the death toll from Ebola in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea - the three West Africa countries hardest hit by the epidemic - has risen to 7,573 out of 19,463 confirmed cases recorded there to date, the World Health Organization reported.

Material for this article came from Reuters.