World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Ebola: UN Meeting Underway as Death Toll Surpasses 900

Ebola: Emergency UN Meeting Underway as Death Toll Surpasses 900

Doctors from the Liberian Ministry of Health, working with personnel from WHO and Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), attend to a patient quarantined at a Liberian ebola isolation unit in the capitol city Monrovia. Photo: UNMIL/Staton Winter

6 August 2014

The UN health agency today began an emergency meeting of international medical and health experts in Geneva to review the current Ebola virus disease outbreak in West Africa amid reports that new cases and deaths continue to be reported in Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone.

Between 2 and 4 August 2014, a total of 108 new cases of Ebola virus disease (laboratory-confirmed, probable, and suspect cases) as well as 45 deaths were reported from Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone, according to the latest update released today by the UN World Health Organization (WHO).

The breakdown from the four countries was reported as follows: Guinea, 10 new cases and 5 deaths; Liberia, 48 new cases and 27 deaths; Nigeria, 5 new cases and 0 deaths; and Sierra Leone, 45 new cases and 13 deaths.

As of 4 August 2014, the cumulative number of cases attributed to Ebola in the four countries stands at 1, 711, including 932 deaths.

Speaking earlier to UN Radio, WHO spokesperson Fadela Chaïb, said more cases were being discovered every day and thus far, the chain of transmission has not been broken.

“If we don’t put all our weight [behind this] and mobilize all our resources – human, logistic and financial ¬– to help West Africa deal with this disease that was [heretofore unknown in the region] it will be difficult for the affected countries, their economics and populations to fight alone,” she added.

Meanwhile in Geneva, members of the Emergency Committee of International Experts reviewing the outbreak, will receive an epidemiological briefing and advise WHO Director-General Margaret Chan whether the Ebola outbreak is a so-called Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).

“If it does,” according to a WHO spokesperson, “then the committee would recommend to the Director-General of WHO to declare it a public health emergency of international concern and recommend appropriate temporary measures to reduce international spread” of the virus.

A summary of the two-day meeting will be made public and WHO has scheduled a press conference with Dr. Keiji Fukuda, WHO Assistant Director-General for Health Security at 9 a.m. Geneva time on Friday, 8 August, on its outcome.

WHO reported today that in a briefing with representatives from member States on Tuesday it outlined the essential components for control, including the need for national leadership, improved care and case management, identifying transmission chains and stopping disease spread, and preventing further outbreaks.

Among the critical issues are: cross-border infections and travellers; partners reaching the limits of their capacity and ability to respond rapidly, safely, and effectively; and concerns about the socio-economic impact of continued transmission.

Director-General Chan also shared information from her August 1 meeting in Guinea with West African leaders and the common strategies to eradicate Ebola from the sub-region. The response would focus on the treatment of Guéckédou, Kenema, and Foya as a unified sector, which will include public health measures meant to reduce movement in and out of the area; intensifying current measures; and taking steps to reduce international spread to other countries in Africa.

While in Guinea, Dr. Chan also launched a $100 million Ebola Virus Disease Outbreak Response Plan in West Africa.

Meanwhile, in Guinea, exit screening is currently being tested, in partnership with the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

In Liberia, security issues continue to be of concern, as community resistance remains high.

In Nigeria, the Government is focused on following up the contacts from the first patient.

And in Sierra Leone, efforts are underway to map where treatment centres and laboratories are most needed and getting those set up.

Sudden onset of fever, intense weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat are typical signs and symptoms of Ebola. This is followed by vomiting, diarrhoea, rash, impaired kidney and liver function, and in some cases, both internal and external bleeding.

WHO says the incubation period, or the time interval from infection to onset of symptoms, is from 2 to 21 days. The patients become contagious once they begin to show symptoms. They are not contagious during the incubation period.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

West Papua: “Lest We Forget”

AS Anzac approaches and Australians and New Zealanders remember those who fought and lost their lives on Anzac Day, it is hoped we will also remember the unfree people of the Pacific region and in particular those who are still suffering from human ... More>>

Iran: 81 Executions In One Week

Coincident with mass executions in the prisons of Ghezel-Hessar, Karaj and other cities, the anti-human regime of mullahs sent 16 other prisoners to the gallows in Mashhad and Birjand (northeastern Iran). Twelve of them were hanged collectively ... More>>

Al-Shabaab: Four Unicef Staff Killed In Somalia

Four UNICEF staff members have been killed in an attack on their vehicle in Garowe, Somalia. Four other UNICEF colleagues are in a serious condition. The IED (improvised explosive device) attack occurred when the staff were travelling from their guest ... More>>

UN: Suicide Attack In Jalalabad Condemned

NEW YORK/KABUL/GENEVA (18April 2015) – “I strongly condemn the brutal suicide attack that coincided with my visit to Jalalabad today,” said United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Šimonović during his visit to Afghanistan. ... More>>

Save The Children: STC Urges EU Leaders To Act To Prevent More Mass Drownings

Save the Children Urges EU Leaders to Act to Prevent More Mass Drownings at Sea. More>>

ALSO:

Japan: Independent Experts Slam Japan’s New Whaling Plan

Independent experts slam Japan’s new whaling plan and declare no more whales need to be killed for Antarctic research More>>

Gaza Strip: Attacks In The Border Areas

Following disengagement from the Gaza Strip in September 2005, Israel unilaterally and illegally established a so-called “buffer zone”, an area prohibited to Palestinians along the land and sea borders of the Gaza Strip. The precise area designated by ... More>>

Australian Government: Iraq Deployment: Joint Press Conference, Canberra

Back in March, the Government announced that we were preparing a force for a Building Partner Capacity training mission in Iraq. I can inform you that today the Cabinet has decided to deploy that force. The deployment will start tomorrow and we expect ... More>>

UNHRC: UN Committee Against Torture To Review New Zealand

UN Committee against torture to review New Zealand, Congo, Romania, Luxembourg, Spain, Serbia, Colombia, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia More>>

UNHRC: Nigeria: One Year On, Call To Bring Back Abducted Children

Nigeria: One year on, UN and African experts call for decisive steps to bring back abducted children More>>

EU & US Let Iran Win Top Seat On UN Women’s Rights Board

EU & US Allowed Iran to Win Top Seat on UN Women’s Rights Board, Rights Group Says More>>

Peaceful Tree Planting Attacked By Zionist Settlers/soldiers

Peaceful tree planting attacked by zionist settlers and soldiers, two Palestinians hospitalised and a German activist arrested. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news