Updated 05:09 AM EST, Sun, Dec 05, 2021

Ebola Outbreak 2014: News & Treatment Update

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The World Health Organization reported Tuesday that the Ebola death toll has spiked immensely. 200 have died in a single day bringing the total number to at least 2,296. 

Following this update, those numbers continued to climb. The World Health Organization said that just one day later, on Sept. 6, 4,293 cases of Ebola have been reported in five West African countries.

The WHO still did not have figures for Liberia, the country that has been affected the most. However, it is likely that its numbers are already much higher with expectations that thousands of new cases will surface in the next three cases.

Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf addressed an audience at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. via Skype. She said that she expects the Ebola threat to worsen in the coming weeks due to a lack of adequate supplies and outside help.

"It remains a very grave situation," Sirleaf said, per Fox News. "It is taking a long time to respond effectively... We expect it to accelerate for at least another two or three weeks before we can look forward to decline."

American health care workers Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol were infected with the Ebola virus. They were given an experimental drug last week to positive results. However, the drug, ZMapp, has not been approved for Ebola treatment. 

The two are confirmed to no longer be contagious, but doctors are still keeping them under surveillance because of the lingering effects of Ebola.  Doctors do believe that they are now likely to survive against all strains of the virus in the future, including the one that has caused this outbreak.

ZMapp has been reported to have, "positive signs of recovery," for workers in Liberia, per CNN. However, the drug has not yet been approved, and will need further studies to determine the longterm effects that the drug will work.

West Africa did receive a bit of good news this week, on Wednesday the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced that it had pledged $50 million to help combat the epidemic.

The United Nations and other international organizations involved in the response effort will be receiving the money. The grant will be used to add needed supplies and to increase emergency operations for countries suffering from the disease.

Per Web MD, Sue Desmond-Hellmann, CEO of the Gates Foundation said, "We are urgently working with our partners to identify the most effective ways to help them save lives now and stop the transmission of this deadly disease."

There have been a number of American health-care workers who have become infected with Ebola. The fourth has recently continued his treatment at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. The identities of the infected Americans have not been revealed.

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