Ebola: EU Raises Emergency Fundin

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The European Union has announced additional allocation of €500,000 towards the effort at curtailing Ebola epidemic in some countries in West Africa, bringing the total allocation to €1.9 million.

More than 325 cases of Ebola have been confirmed in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Up until the end of May only Guinea and Liberia had been affected. Since 29 May, however, 94 new cases have appeared in Sierra Leone’s Kailahun district, an area bordering Guinea. 12 new cases also reappeared in Liberia, which had been declared Ebola-free.

The funding will enable three organisations to sustain and expand their actions: Médecins Sans Frontières for the clinical management of cases, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies for community outreach and sensitization, and the World Health Organisation for the reinforcement of the countries’ health responses.

Humanitarian experts from the Commission are deployed in the region, where they are monitoring the situation and liaising with local authorities and partners.

The European Mobile Laboratory (EMLab), an EU-funded project for dangerous infectious diseases, has been operational in Gueckedou, Guinea since the end of March.

The European lab experts help Guinea’s Ministry of Health to diagnose viral hemorrhagic fever among suspected cases, thus helping to confirm Ebola, reduce the number of undiagnosed cases and limit the further spread of the disease.

According to a statement issued in Abuja, Kristalina Georgieva, the European Union Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response described the outbreak of the epidemic as the worst ever.

EU Commissioner said  “This is the worst outbreak ever of one of the deadliest diseases known to man. We cannot let down our guard – and we all have to step forward to help those who are courageously fighting the disease on the front line.