Lack of People, Supplies and Money Plague Africa's Ebola Fight - Experts

      

Health workers put on protective gear before entering a quarantine zone at a Red Cross facility in the town of Koidu, Kono district in Eastern Sierra Leone December 19, 2014.  Reuters/Baz Ratner

reuters.com - by Leslie Gevirtz - July 8, 2015

NEW YORK (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Three Ebola-stricken countries will seek nearly $700 million in aid at a U.N. conference this week to rebuild their devastated health care systems, the World Health Organization said.

Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, which are all experiencing a resurgence of the deadly hemorrhagic fever, have budgeted a little more than $2 billion between them to restore their health systems.

But, according to WHO, to reach that goal they will still need $696 million in aid from donor nations.

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Liberia - More Confirmed Ebola Cases in New Outbreak

       

The home of 17-year-old Abraham Memaigar, one of two persons confirmed to be infected with the Ebola virus, is seen in Nedowein, Liberia, July 1, 2015.  Reuters/James Giahyue

Initial Ebola test on Liberia dog carcass negative - sources

reuters.com - by Emma Farge - July 7, 2015

. . . The deputy head of Liberia's Ebola response team, Francis Ketteh, could not immediately confirm the findings.

"Even if that dog had anything, finding it now will be difficult because of the time lapse. We are trying to do everything to find the source," he said.

Ketteh added that two new Ebola cases had been confirmed in addition to three previously recorded cases. A second member of the country's response team also stated that a total of five cases had been confirmed in the new outbreak.

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Ebola Survivors May Be the Key to Treatment - For Almost Any Disease

submitted by George Hurlburt

      

A group of volunteer medical workers carry the bodies of Ebola victims to a car in order to bury them in Kptema graveyard in Kenema, Sierra Leone, on August 24, 2014. Mohammed Elshamy/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

wired.com - by Erica Check Hayden - June 30, 2015

. . . The patients held the answer. If they survived, they carried antibodies that targeted the very viruses that had almost killed them. The samples he’d been working with didn’t contain antibodies, but if he could get blood from survivors, he might be able to figure out how to make the same antibodies that their immune systems had produced. It would not be easy or fast, but he couldn’t stand by while more people lost their lives—if not in this outbreak, then in the next one, or the next one after that. It was time for a new plan. . . .

. . . Once your body knows how to make antibodies specific to a disease, it never forgets . . . So physicians use survivor serum in the hope that amid the trillions of antibodies an adult human can make, the ones that fight a specific disease will be in the mix. It’s not a new idea.

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Panel Calls W.H.O. Unfit to Handle a Crisis Like Ebola

                                                

nytimes.com - by SOMINI SENGUPTA - July 7, 2015

UNITED NATIONS — More than a year after the Ebola epidemic began tearing through three of the world’s most fragile countries, the World Health Organization remains unfit to handle a public health emergency, an independent panel concluded in a blistering report issued Tuesday.

“W.H.O. does not currently possess the capacity or organizational culture to deliver a full emergency public health response,” the panel said in its report.

While the agency itself has acknowledged the need for change, the panel added, “it will need to be held accountable to ensure that this transformation is achieved.”

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CLICK HERE - WHO - Report of the Ebola Interim Assessment Panel

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Video - The Story of Ebola

CLICK HERE - Global Health Media - The Story of Ebola - English

June 26, 2015

This animation—produced in collaboration with International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, UNICEF, and Yoni Goodman—brings to life key messages that help people see and understand how Ebola spreads and how to protect themselves and their communities.

CLICK HERE - About the film:

The story features a young girl whose grandfather dies from Ebola and puts the rest of her family at risk. The film makes visible the invisible Ebola germs to help people see and understand how Ebola spreads and how to protect themselves. Critical messages are woven through the story so that people better understand Ebola, see themselves within the context of an outbreak, and see how to act in ways that can keep themselves safe from the disease and protect their communities.

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Bush Meat Trade Roaring Again Despite Ebola Ban

           

Despite a ban on bush meat, due to the threat of Ebola, Liberians are once again selling it in markets and along the sides of roads.  Photo: Issa Davies/IRIN

irinnews.org - by Prince Collins - June 24, 2015

. . . the trade in bush meat, a known source of the Ebola virus, has picked up once again. . . .

. . . Monkeys, antelope, raccoons, rodents, bats, and a variety of other animals native to the forests of Liberia, are once again filling market stalls around the country. . . . 

. . . As the official US government advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says, “human infections have been associated with hunting, butchering and processing of meat of infected animals.”

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UNICEF Recruits U-Reporters Across Liberia

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Three Ways the World’s Power Mix Is About To Change

weather.com - June 26th, 2015 - Brian Kahn

Big changes are afoot for the energy sector in the next 25 years. Coal and gas are headed out, and solar and wind are rushing to take their place on a multi-trillion dollar investment bonanza, according to a new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The report scopes out the power generating landscape through 2040.

The main reason for the big shift in power generation isn’t likely to be because of a grand climate agreement, national policies or carbon pricing scheme, though. Instead, it comes down to cold, hard cash, with renewables offering more power-generating bang for the buck than fossil fuels. Here are the three big numbers.

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Liberia Investigating Animal Link After Ebola Re-Emerges

reuters.com - By Alphonso Toweh and James Harding Giahyue - July 2, 2015

Liberia confirmed a third Ebola case on Thursday, nearly two months after it was declared Ebola free, and officials said they were investigating whether the disease had managed to lurk in animals before resurfacing.

Dr Moses Massaquoi, case management team leader for Liberia's Ebola task force, said the three villagers who had tested positive for the disease had shared a meal of dog meat, which is commonly eaten in Liberia.

"They come from the same time and have a history of having had dog meat together," he said.

The response team was investigating whether domestic animals might be carrying the virus, he said, referring also to mysterious deaths of hundreds of cattle in remote Lofa county.

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(ALSO SEE RELATED INFORMATION HERE)

AFP - YouTube video - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lKkuOZCN3Iw

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Study of Ebola Survivors Opens in Liberia

Trial to examine long-term health effects of Ebola virus disease

nih.gov - June 17, 2015

The Liberia-U.S. clinical research partnership known as PREVAIL has launched a study of people in Liberia who have survived Ebola virus disease (EVD) within the past two years. The study investigators hope to better understand the long-term health consequences of EVD, determine if survivors develop immunity that will protect them from future Ebola infection, and assess whether previously EVD-infected individuals can transmit infection to close contacts and sexual partners. The study, sponsored by the Ministry of Health of Liberia and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, will take place at various sites in Liberia and is expected to enroll approximately 7,500 people, including 1,500 people of any age who survived EVD and 6,000 of their close contacts.

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WHO Ebola Situation Report - July 1, 2015 | UNMEER External Situation Report - June 29, 2015

                     

who.int - July 1, 2015                                                                         ebolaresponse.un.org - June 29, 2015

CLICK HERE - WHO Ebola Situation Report - July 1, 2015

CLICK HERE - UNMEER External Situation Report - June 29, 2015 - (2 page .PDF file)

CLICK HERE - WHO Ebola Situation Reports

CLICK HERE - UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER) Situation Reports

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Liberia Announces Two More Confirmed Ebola Cases

      

Health workers leave after they took a blood specimen from a child to test for the Ebola virus in a area were a 17-year old boy died from the virus on the outskirts of Monrovia, Liberia, Tuesday, June 30, 2015.

Three cases of the disease have been confirmed in the country, which previously had been Ebola-free for nearly two months.

news.yahoo.com - AFP - by Zoom Dosso - July 1, 2015

Liberia said Wednesday a teenager who died of Ebola fever had spread the virus to at least two more people, confirming the first outbreak of the tropical disease for months. . . .

. . . "One hundred and two contacts have been identified, although that number is expected to increase as investigations continue," the World Health Organization (WHO) said in its latest report on the epidemic.

"At this stage the origin of infection is not known. The case reportedly had no recent history of travel, contact with visitors from affected areas, or funeral attendance." . . .

. . . The news came a day after Health Minister Bernice Dahn announced the first Ebola infection in Liberia for more than three months, warning that it was "likely that we will find additional cases".

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Liberia Registers Second Confirmed Ebola Case - Health Official

uk.reuters.com - Reporting by Alphonso Toweh; Writing by Emma Farge; Editing by Daniel Flynn - July 1, 2015

Liberia confirmed a second case of Ebola on Tuesday just a day after authorities said they had detected a new case of the deadly virus previously thought to have been eliminated from the West African country, a senior health official said. . . .

. . . ”We have two confirmed cases today in Liberia," said Dr. Moses Massaquoi, case management team leader for Liberia's Ebola task force. He did not provide details of the new case. . . .

. . . A message from the Twitter account of the Liberian information ministry said that two people from the teenager's home had been confirmed as Ebola positive. It was not immediately possible to verify that information, nor was it clear if that included the case cited by Massaquoi.

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Liberian Official Says Corpse Tests Positive for Ebola

submitted by Stephen Morse

      

“Specimen from the remains of a 17 year old corpse tested positive on two occasions after our burial team moved into the village and safely took the specimen before safe burial of the corpse”, said Nyenswah. We did the test twice and it all came positive but there is no need to panic. Quickly detecting means our system is working”.  – Mr. Tolbert Nyenswah, Liberia Incidence Management Team Head

Ebola Back in Liberia: 1 Month, 20 Days After 'Free' Declaration

frontpageafricaonline.com - by Samwar S. Fallah - June 29, 2015

Monrovia - Liberia is reporting a new case of the deadly Ebola virus just one month and 20 days after the World Health Organization declared the country free of the virus transmission. Mr. Tolbert Nyenswah, Deputy Minister - designate for Disease, Surveillance and Epidemic Control confirmed to FrontPageAfrica Monday evening that the case was discovered after the death of the victim.

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Meager Post-Ebola Harvests Worsen Food Insecurity in West Africa

            

Villagers harvest rice in Sierra Leone. Harvesting is often a communal affair in West African nations, but the Ebola crisis interfered with group activities and disrupted many other aspects of agricultural production in the region. Photo credit: ©FAO/Peter DiCampo.

mongabay.com - by Lois Parshley - June 25, 2015

Pedelers Salee Craig used to grow vegetables. Near his home in Monrovia, Liberia, he planted peppers and bitter balls, potatoes and okra. A sturdy 39 year-old man with cheeks etched from former smiles, Craig is passionate and generally optimistic. 

But he's not smiling when he talks about the situation in Liberia now. Typically, farmers work to gather crops communally, harvesting together until the season is over. But in 2014, the Ebola crisis restricted travel. 

"Everyone was afraid of each other," Craig said. Mandatory government quarantines trapped people within their homes. As the disease spread, fields went unharvested and soon lay fallow. 

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