Ebola "hijacked every aspect of life" in West Africa

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The Ebola virus disease has "hijacked" every aspect of life in West Africa.

That's the assessment of Sarah Crowe, Crisis Communications Chief of the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) who has just returned from Liberia.

Ms. Crowe said that UNICEF is outraged that in the face of what she described as a "historic epidemic", children would be dying of diseases that can be easily prevented such as measles and malaria.

She told reporters in New York on Friday that the malaria season has started in Liberia and it rained every single day while she was in the country's capital, Monrovia.

"When you are on the ground in Liberia as in anywhere else, you really get a sense of how Ebola has hijacked every aspect of life. It's changed the way people live their lives and it's changed the way people die and it's changed the way children operate. Schools are closed. Many health facilities are closed." (19")

Ms Crowe said UNICEF is fighting the battle on two fronts: trying to revitalize the primary health care system and also taking care of patients who are exposed to the virus.

According to the latest World Health Organization figures, there are now over 9,000 Ebola cases and more than 4, 500 people have died from the disease mainly in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Derrick Mbatha, United Nations.

Duration: 1’38″

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December 2017
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