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With Steady Number Of Ebola Cases In West Africa, Health Officials Face Challenges In Disease Prevention, Health Care System Rebuilding

CIDRAP News: Ebola activity steady, back in Guinea and Sierra Leone capitals
“For the second week in a row, the Ebola outbreak region reported 30 new confirmed cases, but in a new twist, transmission turned again toward the capitals of Guinea and Sierra Leone, Conakry and Freetown, the World Health Organization (WHO) said [Wednesday] in its weekly assessment…” (Schnirring, 7/15).

The Guardian: Ebola casts a shadow over maternal health in Sierra Leone
“…Up to 30 percent fewer Sierra Leonean women sought reproductive health services in the latter half of 2014 [during the height of the Ebola outbreak], according to the U.N.’s lead agency on maternal health, the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA). It cited anecdotal reports pointing to a rise in maternal deaths and pregnancy-related disabilities. … Now, as the outbreak fades, the government hopes to rebuild trust in devastated health care systems by turning neglected health posts into sterile environments where women can give birth assisted by qualified birth attendants, or be referred quickly to doctors…” (Hussain, 7/17).

Reuters: Ebola burial teams seek bribes in Sierra Leone: health official
“Ebola burial teams in Sierra Leone are extorting money from families of the bereaved to give the dead safe burials, a senior health official said, leading to an increase in illegal funerals…” (Cham, 7/16).

Reuters: Liberia authorities track herbalist who escaped Ebola quarantine
“A herbalist who treated the 17-year-old boy who sparked Liberia’s third wave of Ebola infections has escaped quarantine and fled to Nimba County in the north of the country near Guinea, officials said on Thursday. He was one of 120 people placed under quarantine for coming into contact with the deceased…” (7/17).

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