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UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY

AFRICA

Denmark steps up ebola fight contributions

With a new report warning that over one million people could contract ebola by the end of the year, Helle Thorning-Schmidt announced financial support and a medical transport ship to the international response.

Denmark steps up ebola fight contributions
A pregnant woman suspected of contracting Ebola is lifted into an ambulance in Freetown, Sierra Leone last week. Photo: UNICEF
Denmark will contribute a transport ship and an additional 20 million kroner to aid the fight against the deadly outbreak of ebola. 
 
PM Helle Thorning-Schmidt announced the contribution at the UN General Assembly in New York on Wednesday, saying Denmark will increase its contributions to the World Health Organization (WHO) and make a ship available for the transport of emergency aid to African countries battling an ebola outbreak.
 
“Ebola is not just a regional challenge. It has become a global crisis. Denmark is committed to this cause. We have already contributed to the international response, including to the UN’s humanitarian air service and we will now increase our support,” Thorning-Schmidt said. 
 
 
"Today I can announce that Denmark will provide a maritime transport capacity to the UN. With this, we can support the construction of needed housing facilities for the international health personnel in the affected areas. And we will provide additional funding to the WHO," the prime minister said in New York.
 
According to the WHO, nearly 6,000 people have been infected with ebola in the western Africa countries of Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria. The death toll has passed 2,800.  
In a report released on Tuesday, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that Liberia and Sierra Leone could see as many as 1.4 million cases of ebola by the end of the year. 

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EBOLA

Ebola tests sold to Denmark recalled

The US Food and Drug Administration said that Ebola kits sent to Denmark and other countries could result in "life-threatening" false positives.

Ebola tests sold to Denmark recalled
Photo: Colourbox
US regulators have issued an international recall for a 10-minute Ebola blood test made by a California-based company, saying it has not been proven to work and could put lives at risk.
 
"A recall has been issued for the LuSys Laboratories, Inc., Ebola Virus One-Step Test Kits because the FDA has not cleared or approved the kits for use or sale," said the Food and Drug Administration in a statement emailed to reporters on Thursday.
 
"The results obtained from these test kits have not demonstrated to be accurate and should not be used as in vitro diagnostic tests for Ebola infection."
 
The recall was initially issued in mid-March and applies to test kits exported to Denmark, Sierra Leone and Canada between October 2014 and January 2015.
 
The FDA did not say how many tests were sent out.
 
The recall is described as a Class I, "the most serious type of recall and involve(s) situations in which there is a reasonable probability that use of these products will cause serious adverse health consequences or death," the FDA said.
 
"A false positive result may be life-threatening by potentially placing the patient in an isolation cohort with Ebola-infected patients."
 
Contacted by AFP, a company representative in San Diego said early trials have shown the test to be 86 percent accurate.
 
The problem with the FDA came down to a labeling error, he said. The equipment had not been properly labeled "for research purposes only."
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