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Evolution of the Ebola response

Ebola in west Africa: looking back, moving forward

This week marks 6 months since WHO was notified of an outbreak of Ebola virus disease in Guinea. This outbreak has since evolved into the largest, most severe and most complex outbreak in the history of the disease. The number of cases and deaths far exceeds those from all past outbreaks combined. The 3 most-affected countries – Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone – face enormous challenges in stopping transmission and providing care for all patients. This series of essays reflects on the evolution of this unprecedented outbreak – the multiple challenges, small successes and despairing setbacks.

Monitoring universal health coverage: a new PLOS Medicine Collection

22 September 2014 -- A new collection published in PLOS Medicine featuring reviews and country cases studies on the monitoring of progress towards universal health coverage (UHC) was launched at United Nations General Assembly. The articles in this collection provide technical details and country level experience about the implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of UHC.

WHO welcomes decision to establish United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response

19 September 2014 -- Nearly 6 months after the first case of Ebola in west Africa was reported to WHO, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly and the Security Council have approved resolutions creating the United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response to contain the ongoing outbreak which has sickened more than 5500 people and killed over 2500. This is the first time in history that the UN has created a mission for a public health emergency. The Mission will bring together the vast resources of the UN agencies, funds and programmes, to reinforce WHO’s technical expertise and experience in disease outbreaks.

WHO Director-General addresses UN Security Council on Ebola

18 September 2014 -- Dr Margaret Chan welcomed the White House announcement of a major ramp-up in support of containing the Ebola outbreak in parts of west Africa. In the hardest-hit countries, the outbreak threatens to push governments to the brink of state failure. She announced a joint WHO/UN initiative to address the crisis, which has unprecedented humanitarian, political, economic, and security dimensions.


  • WHO and International Conference on Population Development (ICPD) beyond 2014
    The 20th anniversary of the ICPD and its Programme of Action is an opportunity for the global community to reflect on progress made in advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights, and address remaining challenges.
  • Zimbabwe medicines quality lab gets WHO approval
    Zimbabweans stand to gain access to better medicines after the WHO’s approval, this week, of a medicines quality control laboratory in Harare. The approval, which follows a thorough assessment by WHO, means that the laboratory operates in compliance with international standards.
  • Statement regarding deaths of children in northern Syria
    UNICEF and WHO have been shocked and saddened to learn of the deaths of at least 15 young children in Idlib, Syria. Establishing the precise cause of the children’s deaths is vital and WHO is sending a team of experts to provide assistance in investigating this event.


Dr Maria Neira, WHO Director, Department of Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health.

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