Originally published September 15 2014
Liberia fires 10 government officials who fled the country fearing Ebola
by L.J. Devon, Staff Writer
(NaturalNews) Six assistant ministers, two deputy ministers and two commissioners have left Liberia "without an excuse." The Ebola pandemic, which has taken the lives of more than 1,100 in Liberia alone, has government workers running for their lives. As the fear grows, governments are falling apart and healthcare systems are becoming overwhelmed. Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf had no choice this past week but to fire the 10 government workers. "These government officials showed insensitivity to our national tragedy and disregard for authority," a statement from president's office said.
President Sirleaf warned the government workers to return home on August 26. Apparently, the government workers were too afraid to return. Among them are Wheatonia Dixon-Barnes, deputy minister for administration and public safety and Victoria Sherman-Lang, deputy justice minister for economic affairs. The presidency said they "will forfeit all compensation until they return home to join in the fight against the Ebola virus disease."
Healthcare workers passing away in droves as they try to treat patientsThe last three weeks in Liberia have been darkened by mass death. Over half of those affected by Ebola are not making it out alive, and the World Health Organization predicts that thousands more deaths are on the horizon. The contagious hemorrhagic fever began in Guinea earlier in the year in March and has nested in Liberia, where villages have been ravaged by disease, experiencing hospital bed shortages, food rationing and martial law.
The healthcare systems there have been bombarded, bursting at the seams with feverish and hemorrhaging patients. Doctors are having a hard time treating the disease. Over the weekend, a Sierra Leonean doctor passed away after being infected by patients. Olivette Buck, head of the Lumley Health Centre in the densely populated Freetown, recently tested positive for Ebola, also contacting the disease from a patient. It didn't take long for Olivette Buck 's condition to deteriorate. Buck's sudden, shocking death was confirmed by Jarrah Kawusu-Konteh, of the State House communication unit. Recently, two Dutch doctors have been transported to the Netherlands, where they are undergoing tests to confirm whether they too have contracted the disease.
Liberia calling out for additional US aid, more healthcare workers and bedsAccording to WHO, more than 300 healthcare workers have become infected among three Ebola-stricken countries; breathtakingly, nearly half of the cases have resulted in death. The situation is so dire that Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is calling on US President Barack Obama for additional foreign aid, warning that, without additional aid, the country is at risk of being overwhelmed.
Obama is set to further address the situation on September 15 after meeting with head officials at the Centers for Disease Control. The US will plan to send additional portable hospitals and medical supplies, since many infected patients are now being treated outside of hospitals right on the ground. The plan will call on the US Congress to approve $88 million in additional funds to provide Liberia with doctors and healthcare experts to reinforce a healthcare climate losing workers by the droves.
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