[QODLink]
Africa

MSF: Guinea Ebola outbreak unprecedented

Aid agency says Zaire strain of Ebola virus most aggressive and deadly, killing nine out of 10 patients.

Last updated: 01 Apr 2014 11:21
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

An aid organisation has described the outbreak of Ebola in Guinea as an "unprecedented epidemic" with a "worrisome" geographical spread.

Medecins Sans Frontiers (MSF) said on Monday that the Zaire strain of the Ebola virus was the most aggressive and deadly, killing more than 90 percent of patients.

"We are facing an epidemic of a magnitude never before seen in terms of the distribution of cases in the country: Gueckedou, Macenta Kissidougou, Nzerekore, and now Conakry," said Mariano Lugli, who is coordinating MSF's project in the Guinean capital of Conakry.

"MSF has intervened in almost all reported Ebola outbreaks in recent years, but they were much more geographically contained and involved more remote locations. This geographical spread is worrisome because it will greatly complicate the tasks of the organisations working to control the epidemic," said Lugli.

To date, Guinean health authorities have recorded 122 suspected patients and 78 deaths. Other cases, suspected or diagnosed, have been found in Sierra Leone and Liberia.

On Saturday, Senegal said its border crossings to Guinea would be closed "until further notice".

No treatment or vaccine is available for Ebola, a highly infectious and virulent disease which can cause uncontrollable bleeding.

The Zaire strain was first recorded 38 years ago in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo.

It can be transmitted to humans from wild animals, and between humans through direct contact with blood, bodily fluids or the unprotected handling of contaminated corpses.

It kills faster than it spreads. 

243

Source:
Al Jazeera
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Your chance to be an investigative journalist in Al Jazeera’s new interactive game.
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Featured
Polio remains endemic in Pakistan as health workers battle anti-vaccine prejudice and threat to life by armed groups.
Despite 14-year struggle for a new mosque in the second-largest city, new roadblocks are erected at every turn.
Authorities and demonstrators have shown no inclination to yield despite growing economic damage and protest pressure.
Lebanese-born Rula Ghani may take cues from the modernising Queen Soraya, but she'll have to proceed with caution.
One of the world's last hunter-gatherer tribes has been forced from the forest it called home by a major dam project.