Disaster Update: Ebola Outbreak in West Africa

News and Press Release
Originally published
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by Katie Carroll | Apr 11, 2014

Medical Teams International has been involved in a West African region-wide epidemic of Ebola (hemorrhagic fevor). The outbreak started in a fairly remote area in Guinea, but quickly spread to parts of Liberia. Although most of the cases have been contained within Guinea and Liberia, there have been suspected cases in areas as far as Mali and Sierra Leone. MTI has been monitoring the situation and supporting health workers in Bong County near the epicenter of the epidemic as well as general support for Liberia’s Ministry of Health. “A dangerous situation like this takes a lot of coordination and careful education of the public,” says Country Director, Andrew Hoskins.

MTI’s support has included:

  • Education: Coordinating a training for health workers to have general knowledge of Ebola, how to quickly triage patients to determine who needs urgent attention, what to do with suspected cases, and most importantly how to protect yourself from contracting the disease.
  • Purchasing Supplies:
    • Protective supplies (gloves, masks, etc…)
    • Infection prevention materials (bleach, sanitizers, soap, etc…)
    • Laboratory equipment for sample transport (syringes, sample containers, test tubes, etc…)
  • Communication: Helping with communication of the current situation from the central level (capital city) to the ground level where we are working.
  • Transportation: Using MTI vehicles and motorcycles to transport rapid response teams and surveillance teams.

Bloomberg News reports that this is "Africa’s biggest Ebola outbreak in seven years."

Said Laurent Duvillier, a Unicef spokesman, “risk of international spread should be taken seriously.”

Please be join us in praying for those impacted by this terrible virus and that its spread will be contained. Pray for protection of MTI staff as they continue their work in Liberia.

We are so grateful for your support of our programs, which enable us to be ready to react when disasters strike.