CDC director: Ebola epidemic spiraling out of control - CBS 3 Springfield - WSHM

CDC director: Ebola epidemic spiraling out of control

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According to the WHO, there are more than 3,000 cases of Ebola and more than 1,500 people have died from the virus in West Africa. (Source: MGN Online) According to the WHO, there are more than 3,000 cases of Ebola and more than 1,500 people have died from the virus in West Africa. (Source: MGN Online)
Dr. Tom Frieden, Director of the CDC, says that the Ebola epidemic is much worse than the numbers show. (Source: CNN) Dr. Tom Frieden, Director of the CDC, says that the Ebola epidemic is much worse than the numbers show. (Source: CNN)
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(CNN) – Dr. Tom Frieden, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said in a news conference Tuesday that the window to tamp down the Ebola outbreak is closing."We know how to stop Ebola, the challenge is to scale it up to stop this outbreak," Frieden said.

The world needs to support those affected countries with the outbreak because the virus is not spreading in new ways, but that speed is important because the number of cases are increasing so quickly, it will be hard to stop the outbreak.

Frieden said that he outbreak is not spreading in a new way, and the CDC and governments know how to stop it, but it is a matter of resources.

"We need a global coordinated unified approach," Frieden said. "This is not just a problem for West Africa, not just a problem for Africa, it's a problem for the world, and the world needs to respond."

The first human trial of an experimental Ebola vaccine will begin this week, as the deadly outbreak continues to spread.

According to the World Health Organization, there are more than 3,000 cases of Ebola. More than 1,500 people have died from the virus in West Africa.

However, many suspect the numbers are much higher, including Frieden.

"We've seen outbreaks of Ebola before,” Frieden said. “This is the first epidemic spreading widely throughout country and many countries, and it's spiraling out of control. It's bad now, much worse than the numbers show. It's going to get even worse in the very near future and our window of opportunity to turn it around is closing, but it's not yet closed. The crucial thing we need to do is to act fast. Action today is worth much more than action within a couple of weeks or a month or two."

The Ebola vaccine trial will take place on the campus of the National Institutes of Health in Maryland.

It will first be given to healthy human volunteers to see if they suffer any harmful side effects. If deemed safe, it will then be given to another small group of volunteers.

The NIH expects to reveal the results of the trial by the end of the year.

"We know how to stop Ebola, the challenge is to scale it up to stop this outbreak," Frieden said.

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