The World Health Organization (WHO) announced on Thursday that 11 000 Ebola vaccines will be sent to Guinea to tackle a resurgence of the deadly virus, which has been classified as a regional epidemic.
According to local and international media reports, 11 000 jabs are expected to land from Geneva, while a further 8 600 will be shipped from the United States. The West African country declared an Ebola outbreak in one of its regions on February 14 when seven people fell ill with diarrhoea, vomiting and bleeding after attending a burial in Goueke, near the Liberian border, writes news broadcaster Al Jazeera.
As the world’s attention remains on the coronavirus pandemic vaccine roll-out, health experts are moving quickly to assist West Africa to contain the Ebola outbreak, a disease that killed more than 11,000 people between 2014 and 2016.
The global health body has alerted six African countries to watch out for potential cases of Ebola after it emerged in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Guinea early in February.
Dr @MoetiTshidi shares an epidemiological update on new #Ebola outbreaks reported in #DRC & #Guinea. @WHO & @UNCERF have released funds to support the responses, & build readiness in the neighbouring countries. pic.twitter.com/49Ocrbwkw6
— WHO African Region (@WHOAFRO) February 19, 2021
In a statement issued on Tuesday by the White House, the Biden administration said it will work with the affected governments, the WHO, the African Union, the African Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, and neighbouring states to stop these outbreaks.
US President Joe Biden said these types of outbreak required a swift and overwhelming response in order to avoid a catastrophe. The 2013–2016 spread of Ebola sped up the development of a vaccine. A global emergency stockpile of Ebola vaccine funded by Gavi – the Vaccine Alliance has been created that will make 500 000 doses available to all countries for outbreak response.
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