In an update from the World Health Organization (WHO) today, the first in about a week, the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak in West Africa continues to accelerate with more than 40% of the total number of cases having occurred within the past 21 days.
As of 26 August 2014, the cumulative number of cases attributed to EVD in the four countries, Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone, stands at 3,069, including 1,552 deaths. Both Liberia and Sierra Leone have recorded more than 1,000 cases.
The overall case fatality rate is 52%. It ranges from 42% in Sierra Leone to 66% in Guinea, the UN health agency notes.
Preliminary results show that cases are still concentrated (62% of all reported cases since the beginning of the outbreak) in the epicentre of the outbreak in Gueckedou (Guinea); Lofa (Liberia), where cases continue to rise; and Kenema and Kailahun (Sierra Leone). Capital cities are of particular concern, owing to their population density and repercussions for travel and trade.
WHO continues to monitor for reports of rumored or suspected cases from countries around the world and systematic verification of these cases is ongoing. Outside of the four affected countries in West Africa and DRC, no new cases have been confirmed in other countries.
WHO and its partners are on the ground establishing Ebola treatment centres and strengthening capacity for laboratory testing, contact tracing, social mobilization, safe burials, and non-Ebola health care.
WHO does not recommend any travel or trade restrictions be applied except in cases where individuals have been confirmed or are suspected of being infected with EVD or where individuals have had contact with cases of EVD. For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page