Obama Says Ebola Fight Not Over in West Africa
President Barack Obama said he was pleased with progress made in the fight against the Ebola virus, but he added that challenges remain in West Africa, the epicenter of the largest Ebola epidemic in history.
There have been no new cases of Ebola in the United States, and cases of the infection are down in Liberia, but the virus is gaining traction in Guinea and experiencing an uptick in Sierra Leone.
‘We will not have defeated this disease until we have defeated it where it is most prevalent, in West Africa,’ Obama said, according to the Dec. 12 USA Today report ‘Obama: Ebola Fight Not Over’ by David Jackson.
UNICEF shares Obama’s concerns about Ebola, and it announced expanded efforts to battle Ebola in West Africa, according to a Dec. 12 report from the United Nations Children’s Fund. The expanded efforts are expected to cost about $500 million, about 75 percent of which has not been secured.
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Supply of Ebola Serum Reaches Liberia
Liberia has started treating Ebola patients with a serum made from the blood of people who have beaten the infection, according to the Dec. 15 BBC report ‘Ebola Serum Supply Reaches Liberia.’ Ebola patients in the United States and United Kingdom have already received the treatment.
When somebody survives an Ebola infection, it means his or her body figured out how to combat the illness and create antibodies. Those antibodies can be taken in blood samples and used to treat other Ebola patients.
Doctors at a hospital in Monrovia will monitor how effective the serum treatment is, according to the BBC. Additionally, some Liberian health care workers have been trained to administer treatments.
The U.S., U.K. and Canada are testing different kinds of vaccine in clinical trials, reportedly with a goal of creating 20,000 doses to be used in West Africa by early 2015, according to the BBC.
More than 6,800 Ebola-related deaths and more than 18,000 Ebola infections had been reported in West Africa as of Dec. 13, according to the BBC.
– See more at: BLU-MED Ebola News