Ebola Cases on Rise; US Opens Ebola Response Hospital in Liberia

The two countries in Liberia, Rivercess and Grand Cape Mount have recorded in the rising cases in the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) despite drastic reduction in the number of cases nationwide.

The 10 death reportedly occurred in Rivercess town of Kaha has led to the deserting of the town due to the fear of Ebola, Xinhua quoted as the county’s Chief Medical Officer Wilmot Smith as saying.

Smith told reporters on Monday in Monrovia that three bodies were buried by residents before the arrival of the county’s burial team, raising concern of possible increase in the infection rate as a result.

He said six people in the town have so far been infested and the greatest challenge now is contact tracing to identify and quarantine those who may have contracted the virus during the burial process during the 21 days period.

He said the six Ebola patients were brought by ambulance all the way to Monrovia for treatment.

Meanwhile, in a related development, Grand Cape Mount County Superintendent Imam Mohamed Passewee said the towns of Gbendeja and Jennehwonde are now Ebola hotspots where residents have been quarantined to monitor their status given the recent increase in Ebola cases.

He attributed the latest upsurge to lack of a holding centre and delays in processing of specimens of patients that is done outside the county.

He said there was still some level of denial of the existence of the virus by people in some areas.

Meanwhile, as part of the US Defense Department’s Ebola response efforts, a 25-bed hospital has been officially opened in Liberia, the department’s spokesman Steven Warren said on Monday.

"The 25-bed hospital, also known as the Monrovian Medical Unit, officially opened in Monrovia, capital of Liberia, and is fully manned by 65 public health service personnel," Xinhua quoted Warren as saying at a press conference.

But the spokesman, however, noted that there are currently no patients at the facility.

According to Warren, the hospital is part of approximately 30 million dollars in program fundingapproved for DOD’s Ebola response efforts, including its delivery and payment for diagnostic equipment, supplies and training.

The official said the first Ebola Treatment Unit in Tubmanburg, which is located in western Liberia, is complete and is being transferred to non-governmental organisation officials on Monday.

"As of this weekend, we now have over 2,000 personnel in Liberia helping with the crisis response to Ebola," Warren added.

(With inputs from IANS)

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