Reuters / Susana Vera
Ebola’s toll on Sierra Leone is much greater than previously thought, with entire villages killed off by the virus. This means up to 20,000 people could have succumbed to the disease by now, a senior coordinator for Doctors Without Borders (MSF) believes.
According to Rony Zachariah, coordinator of operational research for MSF, the Ebola impact on Sierra Leone is in fact “under-reported,” AFP quotes.
“The situation is catastrophic. There are several villages and communities that have been basically wiped out. In one of the villages I went to, there were 40 inhabitants and 39 died,” Zachariah told the agency. “Whole communities have disappeared but many of them are not in the statistics. The situation on the ground is actually much worse.”
The latest figures from the World Health Organization (WHO) put the total number of dead at 4,951 out of 13,567 recorded cases.
But the real total could be up to 20,000 people dead, Zachariah argues. “The WHO says there is a correction factor of 2.5, so maybe it is 2.5 times higher and maybe that is not far from the truth. It could be 10,000, 15,000 or 20,000.”
Zachariah also highlighted the shortage of healthcare workers in the country.
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