The number of cases and fatalities in West Africa due to the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) increased by 720 and 322, respectively since the last report, bringing the total cases to 9,911 and deaths to 4,868 in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, although the official numbers are likely much lower than the actual.

Public domain image/Mondo Magic
Public domain image/Mondo Magic

EVD transmission in Guinea remains intense, Liberia remains the country worst affected by the outbreak and Sierra Leone  reported 325 new confirmed cases during the past week.

Despite the grave numbers being reported, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) see the light at the end of the tunnel if certain things are adhered to.

Elhadj As Sy, secretary general of the IFRC said the outbreak can be over withing six months at a news conference in Beijing. Sy said  the time frame was possible with good isolation and treatment for those with confirmed cases of Ebola, along with proper burials for those who died from the virus.

Sy was also critical about calls for travel bans, saying they didn’t make sense.

“It (Ebola) creates a lot of fear and extreme panic that sometimes lead to very irrational type of behaviours and measures, like closing borders, cancelling flights, isolating countries etc.,” Sy told reporters in Beijing.

“Those are not solutions. The only solution is how can we join our efforts to contain those kinds of viruses and epidemics at their epicentre, right where they start.” For more infectious disease news and information, visit and “like” the Infectious Disease News Facebook page