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Sierra Leone Releases 70 from Ebola Quarantine


A woman has her temperature taken as part of Ebola prevention, prior to entering the Macauley government hospital in Freetown, Sierra Leone, Jan. 21, 2016.

A woman has her temperature taken as part of Ebola prevention, prior to entering the Macauley government hospital in Freetown, Sierra Leone, Jan. 21, 2016.


Sierra Leone is releasing more than 70 people from quarantine after declaring them Ebola-free.

World Health Organization (WHO) official Anders Nordstrom reported on Wednesday that they were kept under observation in the country’s north. The Associated Press news service reported his comments.

All of the individuals were thought to be at risk of becoming infected with the disease. They were kept away from the rest of the population last month after two new cases of the Ebola virus were confirmed. They came in contact with a woman who died of Ebola. Doctors feared they might spread the disease to others.

Ebola virus was formerly known as Ebola hemorrhagic fever. It can affect many organs, damage blood vessels and affect the body’s ability to fight infection.

The quarantine period for Ebola is 21 days.

Doctor Nordstrom said the WHO is still looking for almost 50 other people who might have been exposed to the virus. He said 18 of those people are at high risk of infection.

The WHO says it will continue to investigate all deaths in Sierra Leone until June to watch for new cases of Ebola.

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has killed over 11,000 people since 2013. Sierra Leone lost 4,000 people to the virus before the country was declared Ebola-free last November.

A public health spokesperson in Sierra Leone says his country will be able to control any new cases of the virus and prevent its spread.

I’m Dan Friedell.

James Butty wrote this story for VOANews.com Dan Friedell adapted it for Learning English. George Grow was the editor.

Do you think Sierra Leone will be able to find the remaining people who may have been exposed to Ebola? We want to hear from you. Write to us in the Comments Section or on our Facebook page.

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Words in This Story

hemorrhage – n. condition in which a person bleeds heavily and cannot stop the flow of blood

quarantine – n. the period of time during which an infected person or animal is kept away from others to prevent a disease from spreading

expose – v. to leave something unprotected or uncovered

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