The World Health Organisation (WHO) says West Africa urgently needs more health workers to fight back against Ebola.
The WHO’s Europe director said there was a “very low” risk of the disease spreading to other continents due to tough monitoring at airports in the affected countries of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.
Zsuzsanna Jakab, the WHO director for Europe said: “We need much more international staff on the ground, but in order to get international staff to the affected countries we have to reassure them that in case they are infected and they get the disease, then we will take good care of them in good quality centres, either on the spot or bring them back to Europe”.
Another step is providing the right drugs and vaccines. The EU has already granted 24 million euros for five research projects. But Green MEP Michèle Rivasi fears the new commercial interests could see safety standards ignored.
“If we do trials too quickly, that will lead to the death of children or pregnant women in the way we will vaccinate healthly people,” Rivasi said, adding, “so you see, we can’t get the vaccines right away. So the key is to stop the epidemic as soon as possible.”
Ebola has already infected some 14,000 people in West Africa. Nearly 5,000 have died from the disease.