Ebola virus disease
Ebola virus disease is a severe, often fatal illness and one of the world's most virulent diseases. The infection is transmitted by direct contact with the blood, body fluids and tissues of infected animals or people. During an outbreak, people at higher risk of infection are health workers, family members and others in close contact with sick people and anyone who has died from Ebola. People who are ill with the disease need to receive expert care in appropriate facilities. Ebola outbreaks can devastate families and communities, but the infection can be controlled through the use of recommended protective measures. WHO is coordinating a global response to the latest outbreaks in Africa.
WHO has issued a roadmap to guide and coordinate the international response to the outbreak of the Ebola virus disease in west Africa. The roadmap aims to stop ongoing Ebola transmission worldwide within 6-9 months while rapidly managing the consequences of any further international spread. It also recognises the need to address, in parallel, the outbreak’s broader socioeconomic impact.
The risk of Ebola transmission is low. Becoming infected requires direct, physical contact with the bodily fluids (vomit, faeces, urine, blood, semen, etc.) of people who have been infected with or died from Ebola virus disease (EVD). To protect yourself, your family, and your community from EVD transmission, immediately report to the nearest health facility if you develop symptoms indicative of EVD, including high fever, body aches, joint pain, vomiting, diarrhoea, or haemorrhaging. Isolation and professional clinical treatment increase a person’s chance of survival.
H2HIn the 2014 Ebola outbreak, nearly all of the cases of EVD are a result of human-to-human transmission.Frequently asked questions
2 to 21 days The incubation period from time of infection to symptoms is 2 to 21 days.Travel guidance for health authorities and the transport sector
47% surviveIn this Ebola outbreak, the survival rate has been higher than previous outbreaks.Fact sheet on Ebola virus disease
WHO IN ACTION
Ugandan team brings Ebola experience to Liberia
Spreading the word about Ebola through music
Ebola mobilization in Siruigi, Guinea
ETHICS AND EBOLA
Ethical considerations for use of unregistered interventions for Ebola virus disease
Panel discussion on ethical considerations for use of unregistered interventions for Ebola virus disease
WHO to convene ethical review of experimental treatment for Ebola
Ebola situation assessments
Unprecedented number of medical staff infected with Ebola
Why the Ebola outbreak has been underestimated
Anecdotal evidence about experimental Ebola therapies