Early news reports for September herald that Liberia’s Ebola crisis is escalating at an alarming rate, and government data concurs.  Reports from September 5 and September 9 from two Liberian hospitals: Liberia’s national healthcare facility, the John F. Kennedy Medical Center in the Sinkor District, and the missionary run ELWA (Eternal Love Winning Africa)  hospitals in the suburb of Paynesville support evidence of this trend.

ELWA has two Ebola divisions: ELWA II (the first Ebola treatment center) and ELWA III (the second Ebola treatment center) both built by MSF . ELWA  III maintains the highest total number of Ebola cases, with a larger percentage of new cases than the other healthcare facilities.  The number of deaths has remained relatively constant, and on a positive note, the hospital has more than doubled its number of survivors in the past week.

Similarly, JFK Medical Center has seen a rise in new cases, over a relatively consistent death rate.  By contrast, however, JFK has seen the largest increase in total number of cases in the first two weeks of September.  On a positive note, it’s also seen a 4 fold increase in the number of survivors.

Bucking the trend, ELWA II is the only facility of the three to see a decrease in total number of cases and also new cases.  In the second week of the month, ELWA II increase both its survivors from zero to four, and also its deaths from zero to five.

Liberia’s President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf toured hospitals and healthcare centers to ascertain the needs of these critical facilities on September 9, 2014. 

Healthcare facilities across the country are in dire need of:

  • Ambulances
  • Mattresses
  • Chlorine
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers
  • Medical Gloves
  • Infrared Thermometers
  • Water Treatment Units
  • Plastic Sheeting for tents used in the construction of Ebola Treatment Units
  • Body Bags

The WHO Roadmap calls on key development partners to prepare to scale up their current efforts 3 to 4 fold to meet the challenge of stemming this epidemic.

On August 28, 2014 the World Health Organization (WHO) released its Ebola Response Roadmap and the Government of Liberia (GoL) released its National Ebola Response Strategy shortly thereafter.  Both documents seek to stop the transmission of the Ebola virus within 6-9 months. 

Talk of Ebola orphans has begun to emerge as local organizations begin to devise a plan to help, including the GoL newly announced Social Safety Net Program that aims to provide assistance to orphans, Ebola survivors and the families of the deceased.

At the national level, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf announced the creation of a “Central Command” this month.  The Central Command is to take over from Ebola operations based at the General Services Agency (GSA) in Monrovia.  The Ebola Task Force (ETF) offices at the GSA are vastly understaffed and completely overwhelmed by the needs of the country’s growing Ebola response needs. 

We welcome the philanthropic community to reach out to us so that we can assist you in meeting your foundation and philanthropic objectives in putting an end to Ebola in Liberia.

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AuthorLiberia Philanthropy Secretariat