Liberia: Ebola Fear Grips Lofa Residents

An Ebola health worker at Bikoro Hospital, Democratic Republic of the Congo.
3 August 2018

The NEWS has learnt that residents of Lofa County are reportedly living in fear over reports of the discovery of a new strain of Ebola virus in neighboring Sierra Leone.

A new strain of the Ebola virus called 'Bombali virus' was reportedly discovered in bats in Northern Sierra Leone a forth night ago.

Although there hasn't been anyone affected by the new strain, residents in towns and villages near the Liberian border with Sierra Leone in Lofa County are panicking over the reports.

According to local journalists in Lofa County, residents have started avoiding handshakes and executing measures to avoid contracting Ebola.

Some residents have publicly expressed fear over the news and are calling on the Ministry of Health to quickly instituted measures to avoid a spread to Liberia.

An outbreak of Ebola in West Africa started in neighboring Guinea in 2014. Over 11, 300 persons were killed by the Zaire strain of the Ebola Virus in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.

However, authorities of the National Public Health Institute (NPHIL) have called on residents not to panic in the wake of the new discovery in Sierra Leone.

NPHIL's Director General Tolbert Nyenswah disclosed that public health institute was on a high alert and has system in place to contain any outbreak.

He dismissed that the discovery is a new outbreak and said researchers are on top of the matter working to establish the characteristic of the new Ebola strain found in Sierra Leone.

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