The United States signed a deal with the African Union to help set up an African center for disease control at Addis Ababa in the wake of the deadly Ebola crisis. Under the memorandum of understanding (MoU) the United States will provide expert technical help for a surveillance and response unit as well as an emergency operations center, and fellowships for African epidemiologists to work in the center.
John Kerry, US Secretary of State, said, "The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was set up 70 years ago in response to an epidemic of malaria. An African counterpart is already clearly needed, not just because of Ebola, but to cope with health threats of every kind and to enable countries throughout the region to share information and build the capacity to prevent, detect and treat outbreaks of epidemic disease."
AdvertisementNkosazana Dlamini Zuma, the chairwoman of the African Union said, "The aim of the new center was to strengthen the capacities of the African countries to combat disease, sharing information, build collective capacities not only against Ebola, but also HIV, TB, malaria and many other diseases."
Zuma thanked the United States for its help in combating the recent Ebola outbreak. She further said, "Of course, the epidemic is not over and so we still need to continue working and being vigilant. With the support of the international community, we think it would be possible to see this epidemic behind us. However, we must not let up until all the three countries are Ebola-free. In fact, I don't think one country can actually be Ebola-free until all of them are."