We begin today’s coverage of the plague now stalking Africa with a dire prediction from Deutsche Welle:
Virologist: Fight against Ebola in Sierra Leone and Liberia is lost
- The killer virus is spreading like wildfire, Liberia’s defense minister said on Tuesdayas he pleaded for UN assistance. A German Ebola expert tells DW the virus must “burn itself out” in that part of the world.
Jonas Schmidt-Chanasit of the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine in Hamburg told DW that he and his colleagues are losing hope for Sierra Leone and Liberia, two of the countries worst hit by the recent Ebola epidemic.
“The right time to get this epidemic under control in these countries has been missed,” he said. That time was May and June. “Now it is too late.”
Schmidt-Chanasit expects the virus will “burn itself out” in this part of the world. With other words: It will more or less infect everybody and half of the population – in total about five million people – could die.
Another apocalyptic warning, via Punch Nigeria:
2.1m Nigerians at risk —Report
A new research study by Britain’s University of Oxford has revealed that 2.1 million Nigerians are at risk of contracting the Ebola Virus Disease.
According to the latest study published on Monday, the Ebola virus can spread to at least 15 more countries in West and Central Africa, pushing up overall number of people at risk of infection to 70 million.
The research titled, ‘Mapping the zoonotic niche of Ebola virus disease in Africa,’ compared historic outbreaks to the virus’s possible transmission in bats and chimpanzees to project how the virus could spread through its animal reservoir.
The Associated Press tallies:
35 deaths attributed to Ebola outbreak in Congo
The World Health Organization says that an Ebola outbreak in Congo is thought to have killed 35 people of the more than 60 sickened.
Congo, the site of the world’s first recorded Ebola outbreak, has had several flare-ups of the disease over the years. Officials say the current outbreak is not related to another taking place in West Africa blamed for the deaths of more than 2,200 people.
The U.N. health agency said Thursday that the Congo outbreak is concentrated in one county, and all of the 62 people believed to have contracted Ebola so far have been linked to one initial case. It said isolation units have been set up in each of the four affected villages, in a remote area of the Central African country’s northwest.
From France 24, World Health Organization Ebola specialist Dr. Zabulon Yoti discusses measures needed to contain the outbreak [despite the title, that’s the focus]:
Ebola Epidemic – West African economies overwhelmed
From Punch Nigeria, enlisting support:
Yero meets religious leaders on anti-Ebola plans
Governor Mukhtar Yero of Kaduna State on Thursday held a meeting with Christian and Muslim leaders to sensitise them on the Ebola virus disease.
Yero, who noted that it was part of efforts to curtail the spread of the deadly virus to the state, also told the religious leaders that the government would train 13,000 teachers in both private and public schools in the state before the September 22 resumption date for schools on how to handle the Ebola issue.
Speaking further on the Ebola virus, the governor said since the virus was a “special disease”, government would also place special emphasis on tackling its spread to the state.
Yero cautioned the media against sensationalising the disease in their reportage, noting that rather, the media should be in the vanguard of educating and enlightening residents of the state on the virus.
Liberian Observer conveys a recommendation:
‘Include Ebola Survivors on Task Forces’
- WHO Consultant Suggests
A health consultant to the World Health Organization (WHO) assigned in Grand Cape Mount County, Dr. Akpaka Kalu, has called for the inclusion of Ebola survivors on the National Ebola Taskforce to educate citizens about the danger and prevention of the disease.
Dr. Kalu made the recommendation during the county’s Ebola Taskforce coordination meeting held on Wednesday in Sinje Town, Garwula District.
According to him, the inclusion of survivors on the taskforce was important, “because the survivors should be used as psycho-social counselors in the fight against the deadly epidemic.”
“Instead of bringing survivors on the taskforce,” Dr. Kalu lamented that unfortunately, the survivors are being stigmatized by Liberians rather than looking at them as resourced persons to educate others about the danger of the virus.
The Monrovia Inquirer covers an assessment:
Samukai Outlines Effects Of Ebola…Wants Support To Lift Travel Ban
Defense Minisrer, Brownie Samukai has outlined the effects of the deadly Ebola virus in Liberia.
Delivering a special statement at the United Nations Security Council, on Tuesday Minister Samukai said this “health emergency is affecting every sector of the Liberian society.”
Min. Samukai added that the nation’s economy has been very seriously disrupted. He said Local economic activities such as domestic food production, mining, and transport services have been undermined.
“Moreover, the slowdown in domestic food production, particularly in affected areas of the country, has negatively impacted food supply, thus triggering increasing demand for imported commodities, at higher prices, minister Samukai said.
From the Liberian Observer, some good news:
Firestone Medical Center Discharges 6 Ebola Survivors
The Firestone Medical Center in Duside on September 2 and 9, discharged six survivors from its Ebola Treatment Unit. The first patient, Madam Jenneh Farsue, the wife of a Firestone Liberia employee, contracted the deadly Ebola virus in July/August. She was discharged following several weeks of intensive medical care at the Firestone Hospital and after testing negative of the virus. Five more persons were discharged and reintegrated from Isolation into the communities on the 9th of September.
In addition to the hospital and Ebola Treatment Unit, Firestone Liberia also runs a reintegration program to help those returning to the community following isolation or treatment for Ebola. Speaking at the reintegration program for Mrs. Farsue in Division 28, Cubitts Community, Dr. Lyndon G. Mabande, the Medical Director of the Firestone Health Services, called on residents of the community to interact with Mrs. Farsue as they used to do and accept her back into the community because she is healthy. He described her recovery as “a true success story in the fight against the deadly Ebola virus.”
He called on his fellow teammates, residents and the general public to adhere to the preventive measures stipulated by the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and the World Health Organization (WHO). Mabande further appealed to Liberians to stop the denial syndrome so people can be treated early, a key in the fight against Ebola. “Come to the hospital soon. If you come soon, with all we can put together, you may come home saved,” Dr. Mabande said. He also commended the medical staff for their work in the fight against this disease. “Let us continue to cooperate. If we work in isolation, we are not going to succeed, and it requires team work,” he told the gathering.
Punch Nigeria covers anger over austerity on the front lines:
Ebola outbreak: Anger in Lagos infectious diseases hospital
Members of staff of the Infectious Disease Hospital, Yaba, Lagos, have expressed anger over the impending removal of the hazard allowance component of their September salary. Sources within the hospital told our correspondent that the Lagos State government has excised the allowance, which has been paid for years in the September payroll.
“We have sighted the payroll for September already and there is no provision for this allowance which has been paid to us for more than four years. This is really terrible. If government wants to remove anybody’s allowance, should it be from us workers at the IDH? What kind of problem is this?” one of the workers of the hospital lamented.
Earlier, volunteers at the isolation ward had protested the non-payment of their daily allowance since August 30.
New Europe lends a hand:
UN allocates $3.8 million to support a UN air service operating in Ebola-struck West Africa
The United Nations humanitarian chief has allocated $3.8 million from an emergency fund to support a U.N. air service operating in the Ebola-struck West African region.
Valerie Amos said Wednesday that a reduction in commercial air flights as a result of the Ebola outbreak has hindered the urgent deployment of health workers and supplies.
She said the $3.8 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund will assist the U.N. Humanitarian Air Service, run by the World Food Program, to move humanitarian personnel, medical supplies and equipment and aid rapidly to remote locations in Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone.
After the jump, a call for a military-like response from the North, anxieties over U.S. military “help,” a warning about corruption, Ebola fears Down Under, and another musical response. . . Continue reading