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December 03, 2014

Ebola Effort Still Lacking, Doctors Without Borders Warns

The medical charity that sounded some of the first alarms about the Ebola threat in West Africa issued a new warning Tuesday that a slow and uneven global response to the crisis could set back efforts to stem the outbreak, writes The New York Times. The statement by Dr. Joanne Liu, international president of Doctors Without Borders, contrasted with a more optimistic recent assessment by the World Health Organization of progress in slowing the spread of the virus in Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone.

Despite an outpouring of financial and construction help from abroad, Dr. Liu said, most on-the-ground work in the outbreak zone—such as tracking, isolating, and treating patients and burying the dead—still falls to charity workers and local doctors and nurses, many lacking expertise in containing contagion. "It is extremely disappointing that states with biological-disaster response capacities have chosen not to utilize them," she said.

According to WHO, the Ebola outbreak has claimed more than 6,000 lives and the number of infections has topped 17,000.