Updated rapid risk assessment on Ebola in West Africa

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​The latest assessment includes additional details regarding risk of onward transmission in the EU,  the evolution of infectiousness during the course of the disease, more detailed options for risk reduction in healthcare settings and an update of the global number of cases.

​ECDC has updated its rapid risk assessment on Ebola virus disease in West Africa.

The main changes to the report include additional details regarding:

  • the risk of onward transmission in the EU when an EVD patient appears in the EU;
  • the evolution of infectiousness during the course of the disease and its implications regarding risk periods for transmission;
  • more detailed options for risk reduction in healthcare settings;
  • an update of the global number of cases. 

In the week between 5 October and 12 October the World Health Organization (WHO) reported an additional 600 cases and 461 deaths of Ebola virus disease. The outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in West Africa has now reached almost 9000 cases, including almost 4 500 deaths, as of 12 October 2014. The outbreak has affected seven countries to date: Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Senegal, Spain and USA. Several European countries have also received medically evacuated patients.
 
On 6 October, the Spanish authorities reported a confirmed case of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in a healthcare worker who cared for a repatriated patient with Ebola infection. On 14 October a second healthcare worker in Dallas, Texas tested positive for Ebola virus after having cared for the first case in the USA.
 
There are no significant changes in the assessment of risk to Europe in comparison to previous ECDC rapid risk assessment.
The risk assessment concludes that, if the outbreak continues in West Africa with the current dynamics and without effective measures in place, a potentially explosive evolution could be expected, with serious consequences for the region.
 
The risk of Ebola virus arriving in the EU will not be eliminated until transmission stops in West Africa. This underlines the importance of bringing the outbreak in West Africa under control.
 
Read the Rapid Risk Assessment: Outbreak of Ebola virus disease in West Africa - Seventh update, 17 October 2014
 
 

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 Ebola outbreak in West Africa