UN: WHO to hold special meeting on Ebola on Sunday

New York, US (PANA) - The World Health Organization (WHO) will hold a special meeting
on Ebola on Sunday, as one of its top officials noted that the outbreak is "still an incredibly
dangerous situation" and warned against "a false sense of security generated by the decline
in new cases."

"There tends to be a false sense of security that this is somehow a controllable disease.There
is no such thing as Ebola control, it has got to be driven to zero,"  WHO said in a statement made available to PANA in New York on Saturday.

"The biggest risk to get to zero is not complacency and not fatigue among the countries
battling to eradicate the disease, but the funding gap. The issue is financial resources and
people," the statement quoted Dr. Bruce Aylward, WHO Assistant Director-General
in charge of the Ebola operational response, as saying.

Dr. Aylward, who had just returned from West Africa, said he was concerned about
whether UN member states will maintain their "incredible generosity", as progress in battling
the disease would depend on funding and people before the rainy season hits the region.

He disclosed that WHO's Executive Board would hold a special session on Ebola on
25 January to assess the level of Ebola response mechanism.

According to the official, the meeting will include opening remarks by WHO Director-General
Dr. Margaret Chan, and a speech by Dr. David Nabarro, UN Special Envoy on Ebola,  and a
narration by an Ebola survivor from Sierra Leone.

The statement said the meting is expected to focus on the response of the international
community and WHO to the outbreak, and on how to improve that response for future
situations, the presentation of a set of recommendations and conclusions

Earlier this week at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the UN launched an
appeal for the US$1 billion needed for the first six months of 2015 in order to sustain the
momentum to stamp out Ebola in the three worst-affected countries of Guinea, Liberia and
Sierra Leone where 21,797 people have been affected with 8,675 deaths.
-0-  PANA AA/AR 24Jan2015

24 january 2015 06:41:19

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