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In Pictures: Sierra Leone's war against Ebola
Medical facilities are fiercely battling the world's largest outbreak of the deadly disease.
Last updated: 26 Jul 2014 13:08
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In Sierra Leone's Kailahun province, the world's largest Ebola outbreak continues to spread through remote villages. One of the few lines of defence comes from a treatment centre run by the charity Medicins sans Frontieres (MSF).

While there is no specific cure for the disease, treatment of its symptoms can significantly reduce its fatality rate. With an overstreched team and a series of logisitical obstacles inherent in treating a contagious virus in a remote location, the centre is doing what it can.

"It's promising to see that the limited amount of things we can do is having such a major effect," says MSF's Dr Tim Jagatic. "We're bringing down the mortality rate significantly". About four out of 10 patients at the center will survive, he says. A huge improvement from the 10 percent survivial rate in previous outbreaks.

But one crucial problem remains - the chronic fear of hospitals, fuelled by rumours of limb harvesting and blood theft, is dissuading people from seeking medical help.

Not only does this increase the risk of death, but by keeping infected people in the community, and burying the bodies without professional medical assistance, it also exacerbates the spread of the disease.

Teams of Red Cross volunteers are doing their best to teach people to recognise and respect the danger posed by Ebola. But in a district with nearly half a million people, there are still many villages yet to be reached. Others hear the message but are reluctant to accept it.

Winning the trust of the community is key to ending the current outbreak. But it takes time and resources that the on-the-ground doesn't possess. "We are running behind Ebola," according to Anja Wolz, head of MSF's activities in Kailahun. "I've never seen this before."


/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

Treating Ebola patients is not an easy task. All work inside the isolation area must be carried out in full protective clothing.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

Staff at the MSF-run Case Management Centre in Kailahun are fighting the world's largest Ebola outbreak.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

A team prepares to enter the isolation unit. 



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

Alhaji Sheku has been in the isolation ward for two weeks. He passes his time drawing pictures of his home. He looks stronger by the day, and doctors suspect he will survive.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

A young child who survived the disease is passed over to her aunt at the treatment centre. Her mother remains inside.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

A lab technician takes a break. Field doctors are the first, and most important line of defence in stopping the spread of the virus. 



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

While much of the protective gear gets destroyed after one use, Wellington boots are disinfected and reused.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

The town of Kailahun has been hit hard with the disease.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

The scale and scope of the problem has impacted the ability of health awareness teams and those tracing Ebola suspects to carry out their work. Kailahun district alone has nearly half a million people, but the district only has four ambulances.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

Despite the work of health awareness teams, many still harbour doubts about seeking treatment, fuelled by suspicion of health workers and rumours that they are giving patients Ebola. These Red Cross communication materials aim to teach people how Ebola can be transferred.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

A team of Red Cross burial volunteers prepares to enter the house of an Ebola victim in the eastern town of Pendembu.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

Despite sensitisation campaigns, many are still not aware that the disease can be easily contracted through contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

Sierra Leone's formidable rainy season makes it harder for health workers and ambulance teams to access remote villages. A lack of resources also holds them back.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

Police stop motorists at a checkpoint near the eastern city of Kenema. Everyone coming from country's eastern regions has to get screened by getting their temperatures taken.



/Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

A child has her temperature taken at a screening point along a main road in Kailahun province. The meausre has a limited success rate since Ebola is symptomless for up to 21 days during its incubation period.




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images:
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captions:

Treating Ebola patients is not an easy task. All work inside the isolation area must be carried out in full protective clothing.

;*;

Staff at the MSF-run Case Management Centre in Kailahun are fighting the world(***)s largest Ebola outbreak.

;*;

A team prepares to enter the isolation unit. 

;*;

Alhaji Sheku has been in the isolation ward for two weeks. He passes his time drawing pictures of his home. He looks stronger by the day, and doctors suspect he will survive.

;*;

A young child who survived the disease is passed over to her aunt at the treatment centre. Her mother remains inside.

;*;

A lab technician takes a break. Field doctors are the first, and most important line of defence in stopping the spread of the virus. 

;*;

While much of the protective gear gets destroyed after one use, Wellington boots are disinfected and reused.

;*;

The town of Kailahun has been hit hard with the disease.

;*;

The scale and scope of the problem has impacted the ability of health awareness teams and those tracing Ebola suspects to carry out their work. Kailahun district alone has nearly half a million people, but the district only has four ambulances.

;*;

Despite the work of health awareness teams, many still harbour doubts about seeking treatment, fuelled by suspicion of health workers and rumours that they are giving patients Ebola. These Red Cross communication materials aim to teach people how Ebola can be transferred.

;*;

A team of Red Cross burial volunteers prepares to enter the house of an Ebola victim in the eastern town of Pendembu.

;*;

Despite sensitisation campaigns, many are still not aware that the disease can be easily contracted through contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person.

;*;

Sierra Leone(***)s formidable rainy season makes it harder for health workers and ambulance teams to access remote villages. A lack of resources also holds them back.

;*;

Police stop motorists at a checkpoint near the eastern city of Kenema. Everyone coming from country(***)s eastern regions has to get screened by getting their temperatures taken.

;*;

A child has her temperature taken at a screening point along a main road in Kailahun province. The meausre has a limited success rate since Ebola is symptomless for up to 21 days during its incubation period.

Daylife ID:
27b2efd7f22b79c9fd46e7daf691e8f2
Photographer:
;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;
Image Source:
Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera;*;Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera
Gallery Source:
Daylife
Daylife Raw Data:
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The unusually empty center of Kailahun, where trade and enterprise have been hit hard by the disease.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/8cf17568d2cf6101c39899be0857cb86Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

The unusually empty center of Kailahun, where trade and enterprise have been hit hard by the disease.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/a3d9cf5b41c06475fbc06f9d0a464057http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/a3d9cf5b41c06475fbc06f9d0a464057Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/d9fc86041a98919f93cf7ee4d8113537http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/d9fc86041a98919f93cf7ee4d8113537Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/58a83976fed26276459bda64af8d5f3d

A team of Red Cross burial volunteers prepares to enter the house of an Ebola victim in the town of Pendembu.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/58a83976fed26276459bda64af8d5f3dTommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera

A team of Red Cross burial volunteers prepares to enter the house of an Ebola victim in the town of Pendembu.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/8cf7f86eac21711e6e8f1902a6d631e4http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/8cf7f86eac21711e6e8f1902a6d631e4Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/26372a549c56d18a7e83fa575fa08f01http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/26372a549c56d18a7e83fa575fa08f01Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/307b9edd970f782e6aeb29384df6c016http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/307b9edd970f782e6aeb29384df6c016Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/8663d27a6830b5f50a1a1690de9e2ab2http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Ebola/slideshow/no-caption/8663d27a6830b5f50a1a1690de9e2ab2Tommy Trenchard/Al Jazeera


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