WHO, U.S. Must Step Up DRC Ebola Response Efforts

Washington Post: It’s time to declare a public health emergency on Ebola
Ronald A. Klain, Washington Post contributing columnist, White House Ebola response coordinator from 2014 to 2015, and adviser to Joe Biden’s 2020 campaign; and Daniel Lucey, senior scholar with the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law and adjunct professor of medicine-infectious diseases at Georgetown University Medical Center

“…[I]t is time for the WHO to declare the [Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)] a public health emergency of international concern — a ‘PHEIC’ — to raise the level of global alarm and signal to nations, particularly the United States, that they must ramp up their response. … While the Trump administration has taken some positive steps, it has not been on par with the increasing challenge. … Instead of self-congratulation, the United States should release ‘non-emergency’ aid to Congo that is being withheld in the absence of a presidential waiver under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000. Such aid could enable the proposed expansion of public health efforts in Congo beyond Ebola. Second, the White House should reverse its policy ordering Centers for Disease Control and Prevention personnel to stay out of outbreak zones in northeast Congo. … Third, the United States must step up to do more to make Ebola countermeasures — specifically the leading Ebola vaccine — more available. … This is the second-largest Ebola outbreak in history, and it will only get worse as it enters its second year. The WHO and the United States must urgently step up their actions before this simmering tragedy explodes into something far worse” (7/10).

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