Ebola 'Spiraling Out of Control': CDC Chief

Tuesday, 02 Sep 2014 03:14 PM

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The director for the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention says that the Ebola outbreak is spiraling out of control and is likely to get worse.

Speaking to CBS This Morning, following his trip to the West African countries dealing with the outbreak, Tom Frieden, M.D., said health officials must act aggressively to try to get Ebola under control.
 
“It is the world’s first Ebola epidemic and it is spiraling out of control. It’s bad now and it’s going to get worse in the very near future,” Dr. Frieden said. “There is still a window of opportunity to tamp it down, but that window is closing. We really have to act now.”

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Dr. Frieden, who visited Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea is scheduled to Washington tomorrow that the Ebola outbreak is “spiraling upward.” The CDC director explained that these countries still need help to deal with the deadly outbreak.
 
“We need to support countries with resources, with technical experts and with cooperation. Too many places are sealing off these countries,” Dr. Frieden told CBS News. “If we do that, paradoxically, it’s going to reduce safety everywhere else. Whether we like it or not, we’re all connected and it’s in our interest to help them tamp this down and control it.”
 
Dr. Frieden said that they cannot wait for vaccines to deal with the disease.
 
“Vaccines and treatments may come along, but right now what we have are tried and true methods that we have to scale up. They have worked in prior outbreaks but we are not getting to scale,” he said. “The epidemic is going faster than we are. We need to scale up our response. We can hope for new tools and maybe they’ll come, but we can’t count on them.”
 
During a CDC briefing Monday afternoon, Frieden reiterated his comments that the outbreak is “now increasing rapidly.”
 
“This is not just a problem for West Africa, not just a problem for Africa, it’s a problem for the world and the world needs to respond,” Dr. Frieden said. “We need help now. We know how to stop it.”
 
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