Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 32 n° 15

AHF to UN Chief: Do More to Protect Ebola Health Workers in the DRC!

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 16 dicembre 2019

Three months after a visit by UN Secretary-General António Guterres and other officials to the epicenter of the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), health workers continue to be attacked and killed despite promises by the UN chief to bolster security for response personnel. AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) urges Mr. Guterres to utilize the more than 15,000 peacekeeping troops at his disposal under the existing MONUSCO (UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC) mandate to protect the health workers who are risking their lives every day to stamp out Ebola in the world’s second worst outbreak in history.
Dr. Marie-Roseline Bélizaire, field coordinator for the World Health Organization (WHO) in the DRC, described harrowing accounts of her and her team coming under attack by armed rebels on November 28. Four Ebola responders were killed that night. Unfortunately, the UN peacekeepers did not react quickly enough, taking five to six hours to reach WHO staff—far too long when it is clear that response personnel in outbreak areas are under a constant threat of attack. Just last night, Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) announced the evacuation of staff following a third attack on an Ebola health center.
WHO has reported 390 attacks on health facilities involved in the response in 2019 alone, with 11 health workers killed and 80 injured. Since the current outbreak began on August 1 of last year, more than 3,300 people have been infected with Ebola and more than 2,200 have lost their lives.

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