MOSCOW, September 12 (RIA Novosti) - Cuba is planning to send 165 health workers to Sierra Leone to assist local authorities in their struggle against Ebola virus, BBC reports.
“If we are going to go to war with Ebola, we need the resources to fight," said Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization, welcoming Cuba’s commitment. “I am extremely grateful for the generosity of the Cuban government and these health professionals for doing their part to help us contain the worst Ebola outbreak ever known.”
Cuban Minister of Health said that the first group of health workers will be deployed to West Africa in early October. According to International Business Times, the group will include “doctors, nurses, epidemiologists, specialists in infection control, intensive care specialists and social mobilization officers”.
Cuba is well-known for the high-quality of its medical education and first-class professionalism of medical workers. In 1960, the country launched an international medical program, sending its medical personnel to assist countries all around the world. In 1960, 1972 and 1990 it deployed health missions to earthquake-hit Chile and Nicaragua. In 1999 medical workers were sent to Venezuela following heavy mudslides.
According to the World Health Organization, the Ebola virus is spreading across West Africa very quickly. More than 2,400 people were reported dead, some 4300 more have been infected. The disease has a high mortality rate and includes such symptoms as fever, severe headaches, muscle and stomach pain, diarrhea and vomiting. It leads to inside and outside bleeding, damaging human immune system and causing death in 90% of cases.