Ebola outbreak 2014

The Director-General of WHO on 8 August 2014 declared the Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak in West Africa a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) under the International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR 2005). This is the third time WHO declares a PHEIC following the H1N1 pandemic influenza in 2009 and the international spread of wild poliovirus in 2014.

The current EVD outbreak began in Guinea in December 2013.  This outbreak now involves transmission in Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone. This is currently the largest Ebola outbreak ever recorded.

Ebola virus disease (formerly known as Ebola haemorrhagic fever) is a severe, often fatal illness, with a death rate of up to 90%. The illness affects humans and nonhuman primates (monkeys, gorillas, and chimpanzees).

Ebola first appeared in 1976 in two simultaneous outbreaks, one in a village near the Ebola River in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the other in a remote area of Sudan.

The origin of the virus is unknown but fruit bats (Pteropodidae) are considered the likely host of the Ebola virus, based on available evidence.