UN Ebola chief requests one last $1 billion in funding to fight outbreak
- Last year, David Nabarro, who heads the UN response to the Ebola crisis, received $3 billion, after setting a goal of $4 billion. He says that an additional $1 billion would help with the next steps of stopping the epidemic, including tracing remaining cases.
- More than 8,400 people have died in West Africa amid the current Ebola outbreak.
- The international response has been massive, including military support, medical treatment, intensive drug discovery efforts, and implementation of prevention tactics.
When discussing next steps, Nabarro focuses on the need to trace all of the contacts of infected people in order to break the chain of infection. This involves at least 1,000 epidemiologists, who will be responsible for addressing micro-outbreaks in the region. Nabarro estimates that there are currently about 50 such outbreaks.
The good news here is that the $3 billion deployed to address the Ebola epidemic has been effective and has successfully slowed the rate of infection. One final, massive push would bode well for better long-term outcomes in the affected region.