UN Ebola
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan (Left), Senior United Nations System Coordinator for Ebola Virus Disease Dr. David Nabarro (Middle) and Assistant WHO Director-General for Health Security Dr. Keiji Fukuda (Right) appear at a briefing to discuss the Ebola outbreak in West Africa at the UN Foundation in Washington September 3, 2014.REUTERS/Gary Cameron

The death toll due to the Ebola has crossed the 1,900 mark in West Africa, said the United Nations (UN) on Wednesday.

Due to the rapid spread of the disease, the four West African countries of Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria, would need an approximate influx of $600 million to properly fight this deadly disease, according to a report by Reuters.

The previous official death toll for the Ebola virus stood at 1,552. However, the UN said on Wednesday, that the figure has escalated to over 1,900, after around 400 people died last week.

Most recently, Ebola has spread to Senegal, which has increased the magnitude of the outbreak that started in March 2014 in Guinea. The virus was first detected in Zaire (now Congo), in 1976. Since then, the West African outbreak has been the deadliest and killed more people than any other Ebola outbreak known to mankind.

Incidentally, the Democratic Republic of Congo has also had an outbreak of the Ebola virus, and 31 people have died due to the spread of the virus in the country. However, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has confirmed that the outbreak in DR Congo is not linked to that in West Africa. The WHO has said that though the virus found in both West Africa and Congo, are quite similar to each other, they are principally of different species. To read the detailed report, click here.

Many countries, like the US, Canada and Japan have promised to help out the countries in West Africa by providing experimental drugs for the Ebola virus, as any cure for the virus is yet to be found.

Although the US has had some success with their ZMapp drug, with certain patients recovering, some of the patients who have been given the drug have died.

Hence, it is not yet clear whether the ZMapp experimental vaccine works or not. However, the US has not produced enough doses of the vaccine to properly tackle the outbreak.

Canada has produced their own experimental vaccine, which seems to have worked on animals. They have promised to donate around 1,000 doses of the drug to the WHO.

Meanwhile, scientists from Japan believe that a certain drug that they have developed, to treat influenza, could be used to treat the EVD. They said that they are ready to donate the drug for treatment in the West African countries. However, this drug does not have an approval from the WHO, to be used on EVD patients, and it is unlikely to get one.

Hence, with more and more people being affected by the Ebola virus every day, even the 1,000-odd vaccines that Canada is willing to donate does not seem to be good enough for the containment of the disease.

Many people in the region might have contracted the disease, but not reported it, fearing the hospitals. The WHO said that due to fears such as these, the actual number of people affected in West Africa could well be as high as 20,000.

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