Rapid Intervention to Reduce Ebola Transmission in a Remote Village — Gbarpolu County, Liberia, 2014
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Rapid Intervention to Reduce Ebola Transmission in a Remote Village — Gbarpolu County, Liberia, 2014

  • Published Date:

    Feb 27 2015

  • Source:
    MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2015; 64(7):175-178.
Filetype[PDF-222.31 KB]

  • Alternative Title:
    MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep
  • Description:
    As late as September 14, 2014, Liberia's Gbarpolu County had reported zero cases of Ebola virus disease (Ebola). On October 25, the Bong County Health Team, a local health department in the Liberian Ministry of Health and Social Welfare (MOHSW), received confirmation of Ebola in a man who had recently left Geleyansiesu, a remote village of approximately 800 residents, after his wife and daughter had died of illnesses consistent with Ebola. MOHSW requested assistance from CDC, the World Health Organization, and other international partners to investigate and confirm the outbreak in Geleyansiesu and begin interventions to interrupt transmission. A total of 22 cases were identified, of which 18 (82%) were laboratory confirmed by real-time polymerase chain reaction. There were 16 deaths (case-fatality rate = 73%). Without road access to or direct telecommunications with the village, interventions had to be tailored to the local context. Public health interventions included 1) education of the community about Ebola, transmission of the virus, signs and symptoms, the importance of isolating ill patients from family members, and the potential benefits of early diagnosis and treatment; 2) establishment of mechanisms to alert health authorities of possibly infected persons leaving the village to facilitate safe transport to the closest Ebola treatment unit (ETU); 3) case investigation, contact tracing, and monitoring of contacts; 4) training in hygienic burial of dead bodies; 5) active case finding and diagnosis; and 6) isolation and limited no-touch treatment in the village of patients unwilling or unable to seek care at an ETU. The findings of this investigation could inform interventions aimed at controlling focal outbreaks in difficult-to-reach communities, which has been identified as an important component of the effort to eliminate Ebola from Liberia.
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