What is the current situation?
An outbreak of Ebola has been ongoing in Liberia since March 2014. This outbreak also affects Sierra Leone and Guinea; to date more than 1320 cases have occurred in the three countries and more than 725 people have died, making this the largest outbreak of Ebola in history. At least three Americans have been infected; two are health care workers in an Ebola clinic. Affected districts include Bomi, Bong, Grand Gedeh, Lofa, Montserrado (including the capital city of Monrovia), Margibi, and Nimba. Instances of civil unrest and violence against aid workers have been reported in West Africa as a result of the outbreak. The public health infrastructure of Liberia is being severely strained as the outbreak grows.
The Liberian government has recently instituted enhanced measures to combat the spread of Ebola, many of which will likely make travel to, from, and within the country difficult. The government has taken the following steps:
- Closed all borders except major entry points (Roberts International Airport, James Spriggs Payne Airport, Foya Crossing, Bo Waterside Crossing, and Ganta Crossing).
- Instituted prevention and screening measures at entry points that remain open. This new travel policy will affect incoming and outgoing travelers.
- Instituted restrictions on public and other mass gatherings.
- Instituted quarantine measures for communities heavily affected by Ebola; travel in and out of those communities will be restricted.
- Authorized military personnel to aid in enforcing these and other prevention and control measures.