Federal Foreign Office supports the fight against Ebola in West Africa

04.07.2014 - Press release

With regard to the support Germany is providing within the context of the German Partnership Programme for Excellence in Biological and Health Security, Minister of State Maria Böhmer issued the following statement:

“We must do everything we can to support the people in West Africa in the fight against the Ebola virus and to prevent a spread of the disease. I am very glad that the Federal Foreign Office can play a role in helping to contain the epidemic as quickly as possible.”

The Federal Foreign Office is supporting the fight to stop the spread of the Ebola virus in West Africa with a total of 760,000 euros. The goal is to implement measures to facilitate the diagnosis of Ebola so that the disease can be targeted effectively. As early as March 250,000 euros were made available to the non-governmental organisation Médecins Sans Frontières to treat those infected and fund vital efforts to raise public awareness.

Not all states are in a position to single‑handedly implement the preventive measures necessary to ensure comprehensive and effective protection from biological risks. The aim of the programme is therefore to prevent abuse of highly pathogenic biological agents while strengthening the health care systems and the national security of partner countries. Germany is implementing the programme in more than 22 countries. Activities range from awareness-raising, through detection and diagnostics, disease monitoring and laboratory security, to networking.

The Federal Foreign Office is cooperating closely with the World Health Organization as well as the Bernhard Nocht Institute, the Robert Koch Institute, the Friedrich Loeffler Institute/Federal Research Institute for Animal Health (FLI), the Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.

Background information:

The current Ebola crisis in Guinea and neighbouring countries is the worst epidemic since the virus was discovered in 1976. The local health authorities have so far been unable to bring the outbreak of Ebola fever under control.

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