WHO confident it can catch up with Ebola

Story highlights

  • Two of three Ebola-stricken countries met WHO December 1 target
  • Only western Sierra Leone is seeing a "real escalation" in cases
  • WHO says gap between cases and response is closing
  • 5,994 people have died from Ebola since March
There are 16,911 cases of Ebola worldwide and despite missing its own target on burials, the World Health Organization is confident it can still catch up with the virus, even on such a large scale.
Only Liberia and Guinea met a WHO target set for December 1 to safely bury 70% of the people who die from Ebola.
In Sierra Leone that target was not met, because the western part of the country is "currently dealing with real escalation," said Bruce Aylward, who is in charge of the WHO's Ebola response.
The good news for the WHO is that the gap between the number of Ebola cases and the response capacity is closing and more people are being isolated and are getting treatment, he said.
"The International, national and community willingness is there and the investments are there," Aylward said.
In order to stop Ebola, "we have got to get to 100% safe burials, 100% isolation and then 100% of cases being found, contacts being traced, in order to stop the outbreak," he said.
Since the outbreak began in March, 5,994 people have died from the disease, according to the WHO.