Sierra Leone lifts Ebola quarantine measures amid progress

Sierra Leone’s President Ernest Koroma on Friday, removed Ebola district quarantine measures intended to curb the spread of the disease, declaring “victory is in sight”.

Reports say there are indications that there is a sharp drop in transmission.

He said since the worst outbreak on record began in West Africa over a year ago, Sierra Leone has recorded more than 10,340 cases.

Mr. Koroma said this has made the country the hardest hit, but that signs are growing that the tide is turning against the disease.

“We are now entering a transition phase, given the progress being made against the disease, we must take action to enable economic and social recovery,” he said.

“Quarantine measures were previously in place in six of 14 districts,’’ he added.

Mr. Koroma, said he aimed to get to zero cases by the end of March, added that restrictions on trading hours in Freetown would also be eased.

“Individual households with known Ebola contacts will remain under quarantine, even though victory is in sight, we must not relent, we must continue to soldier on,” he said.

He urged people to refrain from touching the sick and the dead, because Ebola spreads via contact with bodily fluids of infected people such as blood and vomit.

Health officials say that in the latest health report on January 21, Sierra Leone reported just 9 new confirmed cases versus 60 cases daily in late 2014.

Meanwhile the health officials in Mayor of Paynesville said that 25 people had been placed under quarantine following a new confirmed case, and described it as a setback.

Also report said that in Guinea, where the outbreak first began 13 months ago, was still battling the disease, although case numbers are thought to have stabilised.

(Reuters/NAN)


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