Canada pulling Ebola lab team from Sierra Leone

by Rob Gillies

Canada is evacuating a three-member mobile laboratory team from Sierra Leone after people in their hotel were diagnosed with Ebola. The World Health Organization earlier announced it is pulling a team out of the country.

The Public Agency of Canada said in a statement late Tuesday none of the team members had any direct contact with the sick individuals and they are not showing any signs of illness. They will remain in voluntary isolation and be monitored closely.

The laboratory team was helping to control the outbreak there by helping health care workers diagnose and rule out infections. The agency did not say what city the team was in.

Canada said it will send in another team once it is deemed safe. Canada has been rotating three teams of scientists in out and out of West Africa.

The World Health Organization said earlier Tuesday is pulling out its team from the eastern Sierra Leonean city of Kailahun, where an epidemiologist working with the organization was recently infected. Daniel Kertesz, the organization's representative in the country, said that the was exhausted and that the added stress of a colleague getting sick could increase the risk of mistakes.

The disease has overwhelmed the already shaky health systems in some of the world's poorest countries.

The outbreak has killed more than 1,400 people in West Africa. There is no proven treatment for Ebola, so health workers primarily focus on isolating the sick. According to WHO, the Ebola outbreak has killed more than half of the more than 2,600 people sickened. The U.N. agency said an unprecedented 240 have been infected.

3 /5 (1 vote)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Ebola has 'upper hand' says US health official (Update 2)

Aug 26, 2014

Ebola still has the "upper hand" in the outbreak that has killed more than 1,400 people in West Africa, but experts have the means to stop it, a top American health official said during a visit to the hardest-hit ...

Liberia: Three receiving untested Ebola drug improving

Aug 19, 2014

Three Liberian health workers receiving an experimental drug for Ebola are showing signs of recovery, officials said Tuesday, though medical experts caution it is not certain if the drug is effective.

Recommended for you

Ebola reveals shortcomings of African solidarity

11 hours ago

As Africa's leaders meet in Ethiopia to discuss the Ebola crisis, expectations of firm action will be tempered by criticism over the continent's poor record in the early stages of the epidemic.

Second bird flu case confirmed in Canada

Jan 30, 2015

The husband of a Canadian who was diagnosed earlier this week with bird flu after returning from a trip to China has also tested positive for the virus, health officials said Friday.

What exactly is coronavirus?

Jan 30, 2015

The conflicts in Syria and Iraq are straining public health systems and public health efforts meant to prevent and detect the spread of infectious diseases. This is generating a "perfect storm" of conditions for outbreaks. Among the infections raising concern is Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, caused by a type of coronavirus, which emerged in 2012. ...

Scientists find Ebola virus is mutating

Jan 30, 2015

(Medical Xpress)—Researchers working at Institut Pasteur in France have found that the Ebola virus is mutating "a lot" causing concern in the African countries where the virus has killed over eight thous ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.