Surviving Ebola

In 2014, the Ebola virus coursed rapidly through Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone in a geographical spread never seen before. Declared on 22 March, the epidemic soon became the largest in history. MSF launched an unprecedented response and deployed thousands of staff who treated one-third of all confirmed cases in West Africa. 
Despite sounding the alarm early on and calling for help, MSF teams battled Ebola for months in the face of a “global coalition of inaction”. MSF even issued a rare call at the UN in September for the mobilisation of international civilian and military medical assets with biohazard capacity. 
By the end of the year, the number of cases had begun to decline but the epidemic is still far from over. MSF teams continue to run Ebola management centres and turn their attention to gaps in outreach activities, such as surveillance, contact tracing and social mobilisation. 
 

Ebola outbreak timeline:

 


Dr. Natasha Reyes © Laeticia Martin/MSF

"Though there are much less people getting sick from Ebola now in the middle of 2015 than there were during last year's peak, this outbreak is definitely not over.  We cannot abandon West Africa at this crucial time. The world needs to remain committed, in fact needs to increase its commitment, to the fight against Ebola."  - Dr. Natasha Theresa Reyes, medical coordinator in Liberia from October to November 2014

 


Chiu Cheuk-pong 
© Caitlin Ryan
 

“The stigma that Ebola patients and survivors face in the community can cause more harm than the disease itself. This may not be visible but can penetrate the whole community, making their road to recovery even longer than many may have expected.” Chiu Cheuk-pong, a field worker in Ebola mission in Liberia from November to December 2014

 

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