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Ramping Up the Response to Ebola
The New England Journal of Medicine
Successful containment of the ongoing Ebola virus disease outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) hinges on the return to the region of US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) personnel and an immediate ramping up of international financial commitments to the World Health Organization (WHO). The US government ought to make security arrangements that would allow CDC staff to return to the field for as long as the WHO and fellow response agencies deem necessary. The international community should act now, despite the absence of a formal Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) declaration. The WHO remains dependent on international support, both technical and financial. Its Contingency Fund for Emergencies—funding for responses to disease and other crises—has received from member states less than a third of its $100 million annual target. The WHO’s response to the DRC Ebola outbreak alone will cost an estimated $44 million.