Geneva - The deadliest Ebola epidemic on record has now
infected almost 6 000 people in west Africa and killed nearly half of them,
according to the World Health Organisation's (WHO) latest figures.
In the update, released late on Monday, the UN health
agency said a total of 5 864 people had been infected across five west African
countries, and that 2 811 had died.
Here are the latest WHO numbers:
In Guinea, where the outbreak began late last year, Ebola
had as of 20 September infected 1 008 people, killing 632 of them.
A third of those cases surfaced in the three weeks
leading up to 14 September.
In Liberia, which has been hit hardest by the outbreak, 3
022 people had been infected with Ebola, and 1 578 of them had died, as of 17 September.
In Sierra Leone, Ebola had as of 19 September infected 1 813
people, killing 593 of them.
Nigeria had, as of 20 September, recorded 20 cases,
including eight deaths, since Ebola first arrived in the country with a
Liberian finance ministry official, who died in Lagos on 25 July.
Senegal's only confirmed Ebola case - a Guinean student
who crossed the border just before it was closed on 21 August - has recovered,
but the country will not be declared free of the virus until 42 days after the
case was recorded.
Healthcare workers, already in very short supply in the
impoverished countries hardest-hit by the outbreak, have paid an especially
heavy price. As of 22 September 348 of them had been infected across four west
African countries and 186 had died.
Guinea: 67 healthcare workers infected, 35 of whom have
Liberia: 174 healthcare workers infected, 85 of whom have
Sierra Leone: 96 healthcare workers infected, 61 of whom
Nigeria: 11 healthcare workers infected, five of whom
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has meanwhile been
hit by a separate Ebola outbreak, which had killed 40 people out of 71 cases as
of 15 September.
Five Ebola species
There are five known distinct species of Ebola and the
outbreak raging in west Africa stems from the Zaire species - the deadliest of
That species caused the world's first known Ebola
outbreak in DRC in 1976, which until now was the deadliest on record, with 280
The current DRC outbreak meanwhile is believed to come
from two separate species, the Zaire and the Sudan, which first surfaced in
Sudan in 1976.