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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:26 pm 
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Media reports cite the end of the Ebola quarantine of West Point.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:29 pm 
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Quarantine for Ebola Lifted in Liberia Slum
By NORIMITSU ONISHIAUG. 29, 2014

MONROVIA, Liberia — Liberia’s government announced Friday night that it would lift an Ebola quarantine on a large slum here in the capital, 10 days after attempts to cordon off the neighborhood from the rest of the city sparked deadly clashes and fueled doubts about President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s ability to handle the outbreak.

Residents of the neighborhood, West Point, will be free to move in and out starting Saturday at 6 a.m., said Lewis Brown, the minister of information. The army, which had pressed for the quarantine and took the lead in enforcing it in the first two days, will be removed from West Point, leaving only the police, Mr. Brown said.

A nationwide curfew, from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m., will remain in place, he said.

“This was a tool intended to help the community to help themselves and get the help they desperately need,” Mr. Brown said in a telephone interview. “We’re pleased with the way that the community has owned up to this.”

Ms. Johnson Sirleaf ordered the quarantine on Aug. 20, rejecting the advice of international Ebola experts and her own health officials who argued that such a large-scale quarantine, especially one led by the military, would be unmanageable and could exacerbate the spread of the disease. The quarantine immediately led to running battles between residents and the security forces; Shakie Kamara, a 15-year-old boy caught in the violence, died after suffering bullet wounds to both legs.

During the quarantine, many residents have sneaked out of West Point by paying bribes to soldiers and police officers. Prices of food and basic goods have doubled, causing living conditions in the slum to degrade further.

As state radio announced the news of the lifting of the quarantine Friday night, hundreds of residents in West Point gathered on its main road to celebrate, according to residents contacted by phone. Soldiers could no longer be seen at checkpoints, and only a light police presence remained, residents said.

“The road is jam-packed,” said Abubakar Bah, who manages a drug dispensary near the main entrance. “Everybody is very happy. Most people here still don’t believe there is Ebola in West Point. They’re saying that the government came and didn’t find Ebola, and so that’s why they’re leaving.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/30/world ... =auto&_r=0

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:32 pm 
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Ebola: Liberia lifts quarantine in the capital
AFP AUGUST 30, 2014 AT 00:30

The people of West Point had reacted angrily to quarantine their neighborhood by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.
The Liberian authorities, most affected by the Ebola epidemic countries, announced Saturday the lifting of the quarantine district of West Point, in the capital, Monrovia, imposed on August 20. "Starting tomorrow at 6:00 ( GMT), the quarantine will be lifted at West Point, " announced public radio, citing a statement from the presidency. The decision was taken on the recommendation of the Ministry of Health "based on the progress of the district in cooperation with health teams," said AFP Information Minister Lewis Brown.
The public has shown its determination to fight the epidemic "by organizing teams of monitoring and surveillance of contacts (patients, Ed) and on enhanced awareness and vigilance campaigns" , explained the minister.

The people of West Point had reacted angrily to quarantine their neighborhood by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Dolo Town, east of the capital, along with the general curfew from 9:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. . Four of them were injured by soldiers enforcement that measure of isolation, of which, Siafa Kamara, a teenager, had subsequently died. On August 22, after a meeting with the Head of State, the Special Representative of the Secretary General of the UN for Liberia, Karin Landgren said "welcome the statement by the President today that under no circumstances force Lethal will be used again. "

AFP
http://www.liberation.fr/monde/2014/08/ ... or=rss-450

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 10:15 am 
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World Bulletin/News Desk
Ebola quarantine lifted on Liberia's West Point

The Liberian government has lifted a quarantine on the slum community of West Point near Monrovia, a move that might ease tensions in the community that had been sealed off for the past 10 days over the spread of the deadly Ebola virus.
The decision was reached following a recommendation from the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, the highest decision-making body on health matters in the country, Liberia's Information Minister Lewis Brown said in a statement on the state radio.

The lifting of the quarantine means that the West Point residents can now move in or out of the community and carry out their normal activities disrupted by the 10-day de facto restriction on the local residents' movement.

Assistant Health Minister for Preventive Services Tolbert Nyenswah told Anadolu Agency that the ministry's decision to lift the quarantine comes following the cooperation shown by the West Point residents.

"There's no reason to further continue the quarantine. The health team as well as the health center there are moving very well and some level of civility has entered the township," Nyenswah said.
"President [Ellen Johnson Sirleaf] in the wisdom of the recommendation of the Health Ministry has instructed the security forces to lift the quarantine," he added.
He furthered noted that the community - during the days of the quarantine – did "extremely well" in helping the health team with contact tracing of suspected cases.
The test results of those cases will be made known in the shortest possible time, he said.
Earlier this month, West Point residents woke up to find their township heavily barricaded with barbed wire and surrounded by security forces.
The decision was part of the government's efforts to battle an outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus in the West African country.
Yet, the move prompted clashes between security forces and local residents, which left a 16-year-old boy and two people injured.
On Monday, the Liberian president visited the quarantined community to get a first-hand assessment of the situation on the ground.
During that visit, to the community's residents urged the president to lift the quarantine, citing sharp increase of food princes.
In recent months, Ebola – a contagious disease for which there is no known treatment or cure – has claimed 1,552 lives in West Africa, mostly in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.
Six Ebola fatalities have also been confirmed in Nigeria.
The deadly tropical fever, which first appeared in 1976 in Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo, can be transmitted to humans from wild animals.
It also reportedly spreads through contact with the body fluids of infected persons or of those who have died of the disease.

http://www.worldbulletin.net/africa/143 ... um=twitter

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 10:31 am 
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A Liberian health worker who recovered from Ebola after receiving an experimental drug urged the manufacturer to speed up its production and send it to Africa, while crowds celebrated in the streets Saturday after authorities reopened a slum that had been barricaded for more than a week to try to contain the disease.

Physician's assistant Kyndy Kobbah was expected to be released from hospital Saturday after she survived Ebola, which has been fatal in more than half the cases sweeping West Africa. Kobbah contracted the disease while working at a government-run hospital north of the capital.

In an interview with The Associated Press before her release, Kobbah urged the manufacturer of the experimental drug known as ZMapp to step up production. The company has said that all its supplies are exhausted and it will take months to make more.

"They need to make more Zmapp and send to us," she said.

Doctors have said there is no way to know whether ZMapp made a difference or if survivors like Kobbah recovered on their own, as about 45 percent of people infected in this outbreak have. The drug had never been tested in humans before it was given to two Americans who were infected with Ebola in Liberia. They survived Ebola and were released from an Atlanta hospital.

However, a study released online Friday by the journal Nature found that ZMapp healed all 18 monkeys infected with the deadly virus.

Meanwhile, tensions diminished Saturday in the West Point neighborhood of Liberia's capital after authorities lifted a blockade that had sparked unrest. Residents living in the area had feared running out of food and safe water on the peninsula.

Liberia's president had ordered the barricade on Aug. 19 after West Point residents stormed an Ebola health center several days earlier. Residents said they did not want sick people being brought into the community, although those staying at the center were only under observation during a 21-day incubation period.

Amid the melee, some protesters made off with blood-stained mattresses and other materials that could potentially spread the Ebola virus.

Lifting the quarantine Saturday morning doesn't mean there is no Ebola in the West Point slum, said Information Minister Lewis Brown. Authorities, though, are more confident now that they can work with residents to screen for the sick, he said.

"They're comfortable with the way the leadership and the community is working with the health team to make sure that the community remains safe," he said.

Liberia has been the hardest hit of the five countries with Ebola cases in West Africa, reporting at least 694 deaths among 1,378 cases. More than 3,000 cases have been reported across Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Nigeria, and on Friday Senegal announced its first case.

A student from Guinea who had been missing for several weeks showed up at a hospital in Dakar on Tuesday, seeking treatment but concealing that he had been in contact with other Ebola victims, Health Minister Awa Marie Coll Seck confirmed.

The next day, an epidemiological surveillance team in neighboring Guinea alerted Senegalese authorities that they had lost track of a person they were monitoring three weeks earlier, and that the person may have crossed into Senegal.

The student was tracked down in the Dakar hospital where he was confirmed with Ebola and immediately put into isolation where he is reported to be in satisfactory condition, Seck said. Authorities also sent out a team to disinfect the home where he was staying in Senegal.

———

Associated Press writer Babacar Dione in Dakar, Senegal contributed to this report.

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/ ... l-25183370

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2014 4:37 am 
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The Liberian government has lifted the quarantine it imposed on an impoverished Monrovia neighborhood in an attempt to contain the spread of Ebola.

The government on Saturday removed barricades around the seaside district of West Point. That move prompted celebrations from residents and led shopkeepers to reopen their stores.

Riot police clashed with residents when the government abruptly imposed the restrictions 10 days ago. Residents feared they would be cut off from supplies of food and water.

Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf ordered the West Point quarantine after residents stormed an Ebola health care center.

In another development, Guinea imposed a curfew in N'Zerekore, its second largest city, after residents ransacked a market. More than two dozen people were wounded.

Investigators say residents were confused by the health care workers' efforts to disinfect the market.

The World Health Organization says more than 1,500 people have died in the Ebola outbreak affecting Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Senegal.

On Friday, the U.N. health agency warned the six-month-old outbreak is escalating, with 40 percent of cases occurring within the past three weeks.

Ebola is transmitted through direct contact with blood or bodily fluids of an infected person.

The disease causes fever, vomiting, diarrhea and uncontrollable bleeding through body openings, including the eyes, ears and nose. Previous outbreaks have had a death rate of up to 90 percent, but the fatality rate in the current epidemic iis closer to 50 percent.

Some information for this report comes from AP and Reuters.

http://allafrica.com/stories/2014083100 ... adlines%29

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