Fighting Ebola on All Fronts

Judging by the media coverage in the United States and Europe of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, one might conclude that conditions in the affected countries are gradually improving. But, though the epidemic is no longer a front-page story, the virus is far from being contained. On the contrary, it remains a serious global health threat.

PARIS – Judging by the media coverage in the United States and Europe of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, one might conclude that conditions in the affected countries are gradually improving. But, though the epidemic is no longer a front-page story, the virus is far from being contained. On the contrary, it remains a serious global health threat.

I recently traveled to Conakry, the capital of Guinea, together with French President François Hollande, and then visited Macenta, a rural district in the country’s forest region, close to where the outbreak began. In both places, I witnessed firsthand the virus’s devastating impact: suffering, fear, despair, and, ultimately, death. Even the trivial has become weighted with meaning: no one shook hands.

The truth is that the Ebola virus continues to spread – and quickly. Granted, it has been contained in Liberia, but only in Liberia, and even there, there is no way to ensure that another outbreak will not occur.

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