UK issues Ebola travel warnings

By Doug Newhouse |


The UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office has issued a ‘no travel advisory’ covering Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia except for aid workers.

In a statement released yesterday, the FCO said: “An outbreak of Ebola virus has been confirmed in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia. British Airways have suspended flights to Sierra Leone and Liberia until 31 December due to the deteriorating public health situation. Air France has suspended flights to Sierra Leone and some other airlines have also suspended flights to Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea.

“Due to the narrowing commercial options for flights and the impact on medical facilities, the FCO advise against all but essential travel to these countries, except for those involved in the direct response to the Ebola outbreak.”

 

The WHO is doing a fantastically courageous job under very challenging conditions in several African countries. [All images courtesy of World Heath Organization press office].

 

This decision has been long expected following the World Health Organization (WHO) August 8 meeting of the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee, declaring the Ebola outbreak a ‘Public Health Emergency of International Concern’.

Having said this, the recommendation also says there should be no general ban on international travel or trade, but states that the Head of State should declare a national emergency; activate its national disaster/emergency management mechanisms; conduct exit screening of all persons at international airports, seaports and major land crossings; and there should be no international travel of Ebola contacts or cases, unless the travel is part of an appropriate medical evacuation.

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