The number of Ebola cases is increasing much more rapidly than the World Health Organization (WHO) had projected, especially in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, collectively the West African epicenter of the outbreak. Villagers are complicating containment efforts with police reporting health-care workers in Sierra Leone coming under attack while trying to bury victims.
Total Case Count: 5347
Total Deaths: 2630
CDC and World Health Organization updates (Sept. 18, 2014)
United Nations officials say now that the outbreak has moved from rural to urban areas, the number of cases is doubling in about three weeks. Ebola is spread person-to-person through bodily fluids.
Eight people on an Ebola team were killed in southeastern Guinea, near the country’s border with Liberia, a government spokesman said in a statement Thursday. Among them were health care workers and local journalists. CNN’s Nima Elbagir reports on the fear that drives attacks like these. Read full story on CNN..
World Bank analysts estimate that if the disease is not contained shortly, problems with food shortages, panic buying and speculation will continue to wrack the already-fragile economies of the affected countries.
Local governments, foreign states and international organizations have already spent millions of dollars and will require billions to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. But these numbers are small in comparison to the economic slowdown expected for Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia as commerce grinds to a halt while increasing uneasiness begins to affect the markets.
Sep 17, 2014: http://www.worldbank.org/ – A World Bank Group analysis of the Ebola epidemic released today finds that, beyond the terrible toll in human suffering, the continuing surge in the deadly virus in the three worst-affected countries – Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone –could deal a potentially catastrophic economic blow to the already fragile states.
World Bank President Jim Yong Kim says that the largest economic effects of the crisis are not as a result of the direct costs (mortality, morbidity, caregiving, and the associated losses to working days) but rather those resulting from aversion behavior driven by fear of contagion.
More than $1bn (£618m) is needed to fight the West Africa Ebola outbreak – a tenfold increase in the past month, the UN’s Ebola co-ordinator David Nabarro has announced. The World Health Organization (WHO) has described the health crisis as “unparalleled in modern times”. According to the WHO, the Ebola epidemic has killed 2,461 people this year, half of the 4,985 infected by the virus.
“We requested about $100m a month ago and now it is $1bn, so our ask has gone up 10 times in a month,” Mr Nabarro told a briefing in Geneva.
Entire towns and villages have been placed into quarantine or abandoned by residents…
By Lilian Leposo and Nima Elbagir, CNN
Zango Town, Liberia (CNN) — At the gravesite in a northern Liberia village, there are no religious or traditional burial rites. No ceremony, no mourning, no family members, and no final goodbyes.
Nothing but a group of men dressed in space-suit-like outfits, cautiously throwing the dead body into the grave, they pause only to toss in anything else they are wearing that came into contact with the deceased.
The World Health Organization has voiced concern about the “unprecedented” number of healthcare workers hit by the Ebola outbreak. More than 120 health workers have died and over 240 others infected so far.
Nigeria’s health minister will hold an emergency meeting of state health commissioners on Monday as West Africa struggles to halt the deadly Ebola virus, amid growing concern at the toll among healthcare workers.
Nigeria’s medics have paid a heavy price in the outbreak: of the six people who have died from the disease in Africa’s most populous nation, two have been doctors and two others nurses. On Sunday a fresh case was confirmed in a doctor whose husband died from the virus, adding to a growing list of those providing healthcare in West Africa to be hit by the epidemic.