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Ebola; 11,000 vaccines will be sent to Guinea by weekend

The World Health Organization said that it will be sending more than 11,000 Ebola vaccinations to the West African nation of Guinea by the weekend to combat the recent epidemic of the deadly hemorrhagic fever.

WHO regional director for Africa Dr. Matshidiso Moeti said that 11,000 Ebola vaccines are being prepared in Geneva and are expected to arrive in Guinea in the coming days. She also said that an additional 8,600 doses will be shipped from the United States. The epidemic was declared in the country’s southern N’Zerekore region. The vaccination campaign will start early as possible.

“Thirty vaccination experts have already been mobilized locally and are ready to deploy as soon as Ebola vaccines arrive in the country,” she said. The WHO has called on six African countries to be on high alert for Ebola. The alert came after when Guinea and Congo have a huge number of cases recorded in recent weeks.

“The sub-region is on high alert and surveillance in neighboring countries is ongoing. Our collective, quick action is crucial to avert an uncontrolled spread of Ebola amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which has already pushed health workers and health facilities to the edge” she said. According to WHO, Guinea has recorded three confirmed Ebola cases which includes one death in the last day.

Guinea’s epidemic was declared less than a month after health officials detected suspicious cases with patients presenting symptoms of diarrhea, vomiting and bleeding. How it began again is, the sick participated in the burial of a nurse who had died in late January and was buried on February 1 in Gouake, in the country’s south. In traditional funerals people wash and touch the body of the deceased and this facilitated the spread of Ebola. The United Nations announced that it is releasing $15 million from its emergency relief fund to help Guinea and Congo combat the new Ebola outbreaks.

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