Ebola Response in Action

Updated January 2016

January 2016

Since July 2014 unparalleled progress has been made in establishing systems and tools that allowed us to respond rapidly and effectively. Thanks to the diligence and dedication of tens of thousands of responders, scientists, researchers, developers, volunteers, and manufacturers, we now have diagnostics, a vaccine, registered foreign medical teams, and thousands of trained responders who can rapidly deploy to outbreaks.

July 2014
Few diagnostic services
No vaccine
Few medical teams
Few trained responders
December 2015
6 rapid diagnostic toolsthat can detect Ebola virus in patients in a matter of hours rather than days & 24 testing laboratories
In Phase III clinical trials, VSV-EBOV Ebola vaccine has been shown to be safe and highly effective against Ebola virus disease
A global network of thousands of medical professionals available for rapid deployment through the Foreign Medical Teams (FMTs) Registry
Thousands of experts trained in clinical management, infection prevention and control, and more

Even though we’ve made real progress, this outbreak is not over. New cases continue to emerge in Guinea, Sierra Leone, and recently Liberia. The last part of any outbreak response is the hardest part where exhaustion and complacency threaten our progress. Ongoing, intensified, highly-targeted response continues as we push to overcome the challenges that remain.

  • Identifying and treating all cases
  • Gaining community trust
  • Tracking every contact from every case
  • Countering stigmatization and community mistrust

WHO will continue to deploy technical experts in the 3 most affected countries and engage not only in response activities, but also in early recovery and survivor support efforts.

On the ground

4 000
technical experts
in the
most affected countries
present in nearly
field sites


More than
1.48 million
sets of personal protective equipment
motorbikes and trucks
treatment / community care centres
safe and dignified burial teams

Disease detection and surveillance

Deployed nearly
Reduced case incidence from more than 950 cases per week in September 2014 to 5 cases or fewer by July 2015
contacts per patient
contacts per patient


Pre-deployment training for
8 600+
medical and public health responders
And provided more than
technical guideline documents


Supporting more than
countries worldwide
to ensure they are ready to respond to Ebola and other public health emergencies

Research and development

Expediting vaccine trials from
less than


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Support from donors has been crucial for the rapid scale-up and evolution of the Ebola response. Between March 2014 and 31 December 2015, WHO received over US$ 450 million in direct and in-kind contributions from over 60 donors. This generous support has enabled WHO, in collaboration with the governments and ministries of health of the affected countries, and in concert with international partners, to implement a wide-ranging package of activities and interventions to end transmission of Ebola virus in West Africa. Every facet of the response — from tracing the contacts of patients with Ebola virus disease, to helping to design and run clinical trials to test an Ebola vaccine, to coordinating the medical evacuation of international responders — has only been possible thanks to the generosity of our donors.