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GENEVA, October 9. /TASS/. The total number of confirmed, probable, and suspected cases in the West African epidemic of Ebola virus disease (EVD) reported up to October 5, 2014 (epidemiological week 40) is 8,033 with 3,879 deaths, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a report on Wednesday.
The affected countries include Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and the United States of America. A confirmed case of EVD has also been reported in Spain.
The past week has seen a continuation of recent trends: the situation in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone continues to deteriorate, with widespread and persistent transmission of EVD. Problems with data collecting continue in Liberia. It should be emphasized that the reported fall in the number of new cases in Liberia over the past three weeks is unlikely to be genuine. Rather, it reflects a deterioration in the ability of overwhelmed responders to record accurate epidemiological data. It is clear from field reports and first responders that EVD cases are being under-reported from several key locations, and laboratory data that have not yet been integrated into official estimates indicate an increase in the number of new cases in Liberia.
There is no evidence that the EVD epidemic in West Africa is being brought under control, though there is evidence of a decline in incidence in the districts of Lofa in Liberia, and Kailahun and Kenema in Sierra Leone, the WHO said.
The situation in Liberia continued to deteriorate, with a recorded death toll of 2,210 so far and 200 suspected or probable new cases in Monrovia in each of the past three weeks, and the reappearance of Ebola in Grand Cape Mount District for the first time in three weeks, it said.
In Sierra Leone, the capital Freetown and three neighboring districts had all reported a surge of cases in the past seven or eight weeks, and the country now had 879 recorded Ebola deaths.
However, declines in Ebola cases in Liberia's Lofa district and in Kailahun and Kenema in Sierra Leone appeared to be genuine, the WHO said.
Although Liberia had opened a new Ebola treatment center, it still had only 21% of the 2,930 bed spaces it needed. Sierra Leone had 26% of a required 1,148 bed spaces.
The WHO's update also included 8 deaths and 20 cases in Nigeria, as well as one case each in Senegal and the United States.
There is high risk for medics. Since December, 2013, 401 medical workers have been infected in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria, and 232 of them have died, the WTO said.