UN / EBOLA GRESSLY

26-Sep-2019 00:03:30
The United Nations Emergency Ebola Response Coordinator, David Gressly, said the Ebola response in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is at “a more promising place than we certainly were a few months ago, when we saw a number of attacks against Ebola responders, particularly in the city of Butembo.” UNIFEED / FILE
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STORY: UN / EBOLA GRESSLY
TRT: 03:30
SOURCE: UNIFEED / UNICEF / WHO / WFP
RESTRICTIONS: PLEASE CREDIT UNICEF ON SCREEN / PLEASE CREDIT WFP ON SCREEN
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 25 SEPTEMBER 2019, NEW YORK CITY / FILE
SHOTLIST
FILE - UNICEF - 29 AUGUST 2019, ITURI PROVINCE, DRC

1. Wide shot, UNICEF vehicle drives through muddy road in forest

FILE - UNICEF - 29 AUGUST 2019, KOMANDA, DRC

2. Med shot, caregiver wearing protective gear, holds child who is a suspected Ebola patient (status not yet confirmed)

FILE - UNICEF - 31 AUGUST 2019, MANGINA, DRC

3. Med shot, two health workers in protective gear check on an Ebola patient

25 SEPTEMBER 2019, NEW YORK CITY

4. SOUNDBITE (English) David Gressly, United Nations Emergency Ebola Response Coordinator:
“We are kind of in a more promising place than we certainly were a few months ago, when we saw a number of attacks against Ebola responders, particularly in the city of Butembo. Things have advanced. I think what the main difference now is that not only is there greater security for responders in Butembo, outside of Butembo and Beni there are a lot of areas that were inaccessible in the past, where a lot of ground is being done to try to gain community acceptance for the response, which has had a very positive impact. Getting into areas where the virus is circulating on a regular basis has allowed an effective response to follow and we are seeing that cases decline, in some cases dramatically.”

FILE - WHO - 26 JUNE 2019, MPONDWE BORDER CROSSING, UGANDA

5. Various shots, border screening

25 SEPTEMBER 2019, NEW YORK CITY

6. SOUNDBITE (English) David Gressly, United Nations Emergency Ebola Response Coordinator:
“This is a very urban area. People are surprised to hear that Butembo has more than a million people. These are large cities. And it’s important to understand that. It’s also a very mobile population which allows movement between Beni and Butembo, but also to Uganda and border to Goma quite easily, a one, or two-day trip. Very routine. And that becomes a problem. So, what needs to be done is two or three things, it’s good preparedness around the border areas; good preparedness in provinces adjacent in case the virus gets into that area. More important is, really, let’s just dry up the source of the virus in that central area that’s been feeding into the Ugandan border, feeding into Goma, and then the threat will go down considerably.”

FILE - WHO - 24 FEBRUARY 2019 - BENI, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE
CONGO (DRC)

7. Close up, vaccine ampule
8. Various shots, patients being vaccinated

25 SEPTEMBER 2019, NEW YORK CITY

9. SOUNDBITE (English) David Gressly, United Nations Emergency Ebola Response Coordinator:
“Vaccination by itself is probably not sufficient to end the epidemic. It can put a break on the spread, slow it down, but, in itself is probably not going to stop the epidemic. But it also of course saves lives. That’s extremely important. So, the best use of the vaccine is a constantly evolving question. How best to utilize that? which populations are at a greater risk?”

FILE - WHO - 24 FEBRUARY 2019 - BENI, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE
CONGO (DRC)

10. Various shots, patients having their temperature checked before getting the rVSV-ZEBOV-G Ebola vaccine

25 SEPTEMBER 2019, NEW YORK CITY

11. SOUNDBITE (English) David Gressly, United Nations Emergency Ebola Response Coordinator:
“Bit by bit we are making Ebola into a more normalized disease. And ultimately, what we would like to see is that the Ebola treatment centres themselves be seen as a place where you go to get cured of Ebola, not die of Ebola, which is often the perception. That totally turns and transforms the psychological aspect of Ebola as a disease.”

FILE - WFP - 19-25 FEBRUARY 2019, BENI, NORTH KIVU, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO

12. Various shots, isolation cubicles used to treat suspected and confirmed Ebola cases
13. Various shots, health workers in the ETC sterilizing clothes and equipment
STORYLINE
The United Nations Emergency Ebola Response Coordinator, David Gressly, on Wednesday (25 Sep) said the Ebola response in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is at “a more promising place than we certainly were a few months ago, when we saw a number of attacks against Ebola responders, particularly in the city of Butembo.”

Gressly, interviewed by UN News in New York, said “things have advanced” and “not only is there greater security for responders in Butembo, outside of Butembo and Beni there are a lot of areas that were inaccessible in the past, where a lot of ground is being done to try to gain community acceptance for the response, which has had a very positive impact.”

He added that “getting into areas where the virus is circulating on a regular basis has allowed an effective response to follow and we are seeing that cases decline, in some cases dramatically.”

The Response Coordinator explained that Beni and Butembo have very large and mobile populations, making it necessary to have “good preparedness around the border areas; good preparedness in provinces adjacent in case the virus gets into that area.”

He said, “let’s just dry up the source of the virus in that central area that’s been feeding into the Ugandan border, feeding into Goma, and then the threat will go down considerably.”

As more than 10,000 people have been immunized against the Ebola virus, Gressly said, “vaccination by itself is probably not sufficient to end the epidemic. It can put a break on the spread, slow it down, but, in itself is probably not going to stop the epidemic.”

He said, “the best use of the vaccine is a constantly evolving question. How best to utilize that? which populations are at a greater risk?”

Gressly said, “bit by bit we are making Ebola into a more normalized disease. And ultimately, what we would like to see is that the Ebola treatment centres themselves be seen as a place where you go to get cured of Ebola, not die of Ebola, which is often the perception. That totally turns and transforms the psychological aspect of Ebola as a disease.”

Latest figures show that more than 2,100 lives have been lost to the haemorrhagic fever since August last year, with 57 new cases recorded in the week up to 19 September; although around 1,000 have recovered from the disease, with more than 3,150 cases overall.
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