An Ebola epidemic is now being characterized as “out of control” by Doctors Without Borders, who have identified more than 60 outbreak hotspots in West Africa, Agence France-Presse reports.
“The scale of the current Ebola epidemic is unprecedented in terms of geographical distribution, people infected and deaths,” Doctors Without Borders said in a statement Monday, according to AFP.
“The epidemic is now out of control,” said Dr. Bart Janssens, Doctors Without Borders director of operations. “With the appearance of new sites in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, there is a real risk of it spreading to other areas.”
Since Ebola cases were first reported in Guinea at the beginning of the year, more than 300 people have succumbed to the virus, which is is deadly to those infected 90 percent of the time.
The virus spreads rapidly by contact with bodily fluids, and causes fever, muscle pain, diarrhea, uncontrollable bleeding and can also cause organ failure.
“Ebola is no longer a public health issue limited to Guinea: it is affecting the whole of West Africa,” Dr. Janssens said to AFP.