SHAFAQNA- The number of people killed by the Ebola virus has nearly reached 5,700 people, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a statement Wednesday.
“A total of 15 935 confirmed, probable, and suspected cases of Ebola virus disease (EVD) have been reported in six affected countries (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Sierra Leone, Spain and the United States of America) and two previously affected countries (Nigeria and Senegal) up to the end of 23 November. There have been 5689 reported deaths,” the WHO’s report said.
“Cases and deaths continue to be under-reported in this outbreak. Reported case incidence is stable in Guinea (148 confirmed cases reported in the week to 23 November), stable or declining in Liberia (67 new confirmed cases in the week to 23 November), and may still be rising in Sierra Leone (385 new confirmed cases in the week to 23 November),” the global health body said.
“The total number of cases reported in Sierra Leone since the outbreak began will soon eclipse the number reported from Liberia. The case fatality rate across the three most-affected countries in patients with a recorded definitive outcome is approximately 60%. Three health-care workers were reported infected with EVD in Guinea in the week to 23 November,” it said.
In line with statistics, the maximum number of Ebola-related deaths and cases is registered in Liberia – 3,016 deaths and 7,168 cumulative cases. Liberia is followed by Sierra Leone (1,398 deaths and 6,599 cases) and Guinea (1,260 and 2,134 respectively).
“Case incidence is stable in Guinea, stable or declining in Liberia, but may still be increasing in Sierra Leone,” the WHO said in its report.
Ebola virus outbreak
The Ebola virus disease, previously known as the Ebola hemorrhagic fever, is a severe illness in humans, often fatal, according to the WHO. The virus is passed on to people from wild animals and can be transmitted from humans to humans. The average EVD case death rate is some 50%.
The first outbreaks of the EVD occurred in remote Central African villages, near tropical rainforests. However, major urban and rural areas have been involved in the most recent outbreak in western Africa.
Early supportive care, which includes rehydration and symptomatic treatment, improves the survival rate.
No licensed treatment has yet been proven to be able to neutralize the virus but a number of blood, immunological and drug medications are under development. There are no licensed Ebola vaccines yet but two candidates are being evaluated.