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Ebola Outbreak in Congo Is Declared a Global Health Emergency

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Rebecca Katz, director of the Center for Global Health Science and Security at Georgetown University, stated in a press release: “Almost all international legal and policy experts agree that the conditions for declaring a public health emergency of international concern were met long ago, so we are delighted to see that the emergency committee and the director-general have finally come to this decision. Not only do we believe that the decision will help bring additional needed attention to this ongoing crisis, but also move nations in the regions to take all necessary steps to address the potential spread of the disease.”

The govt director of Unicef, Henrietta Fore, stated in a press release: “This is an emergency. There is a very real risk that the Ebola outbreak could spread to neighboring countries, so the international community should urgently come together to make sure that doesn’t happen.”

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The W.H.O. stated it had obtained $49 million from worldwide donors from February to July, solely half the cash it wants. Officials who’ve visited the area say provides are operating quick, together with the protecting gear that well being staff have to keep away from changing into contaminated. At a United Nations assembly in regards to the outbreak on Monday, one official stated he had seen syringes and gloves being reused as a result of tools was changing into scarce.

Dr. Tedros stated that emergency declarations weren’t meant for use to lift cash, and that the W.H.O. didn’t know of any donors who had withheld funds as a result of no emergency had been declared.

“But if that is the excuse, it can no longer be used,” he stated.

More than 161,000 individuals have obtained an Ebola vaccine made by Merck that’s thought-about extremely efficient. Concerns in regards to the provide have led the W.HO. to advocate utilizing smaller doses to maintain from operating out.

Pamela L. Eisele, a spokeswoman for Merck, stated in an e mail that Merck had donated greater than 195,000 doses of the vaccine to the W.H.O. since final 12 months, had 245,000 extra able to ship and anticipated to have 900,000 extra within the subsequent six to 18 months. It takes a couple of 12 months to provide a batch of the vaccine, she stated.

The W.H.O. and different specialists have advocated the usage of a second vaccine as nicely, made by Johnson & Johnson. But Congo’s Ministry of Health has declined it, saying that the Merck vaccine is understood to work, and that it’s the just one the nation’s residents, after a interval of distrust and suspicion, have come to just accept.

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