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Ebola virus death toll nears 8,000 - WHO
The number of people killed by the Ebola virus has reached 7,989, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a statement Friday.
A total of 20,381 cases of Ebola virus disease (EVD) have been reported, the report said. The data refer to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.
In line with statistics, the maximum number of Ebola-related deaths and cases has been registered in Liberia - 3,423 cumulative deaths and 8,018 cumulative cases. Liberia is followed by Sierra Leone (2,827 deaths and 9,633 cases) and Guinea (1,739 and 2,730 respectively).
Separate cases have also been registered in Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Spain, Britain and the United States.
The Ebola virus disease, previously known as the Ebola hemorrhagic fever, is a severe illness in humans, often fatal, according to the WHO. The virus is passed on to people from wild animals and can be transmitted from humans to humans. The average EVD case death rate is some 50%
The first outbreaks of the EVD occurred in remote Central African villages, near tropical rainforests. However, major urban and rural areas have been involved in the most recent outbreak in western Africa.
Early supportive care, which includes rehydration and symptomatic treatment, improves the survival rate.
No licensed treatment has yet been proven to be able to neutralize the virus but a number of blood, immunological and drug medications are under development. There are no licensed Ebola vaccines yet but two candidates are being evaluated.
[Source: Itar Tass, Geneva, 02Jan15]
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