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US relaxes Ebola screening for Liberians

Satus of Liberty NDLiberians entering the United States through the five major airports designated for Ebola effected countries will not be subjected to tough screening measures imposed at the height of the outbreak last year, the U.S embassy announced Tuesday June 17, 2015.

The move by the U.S to scale back screening for travelers from Liberia comes a month after the World Health Organization or WHO declared the country free of the tropical disease.

Temperatures of travelers from Liberia will not be measured and reported on arrival, but contact information will still be left to state authorities, the U.S Government said.

However, requirements for active monitoring will end immediately, but local or states jurisdiction may exercise discretion.

Making the pronouncement, the US Government calls on Liberia to take rigorous surveillance measures, particularly along the Liberia- Sierra Leone and Guinea borders as a best defense against the reintroduction of Ebola in the country, including maintaining effective entry and exit screening at all points of entry.

It says although Liberia has been removed from the list of Ebola affected countries , the United States has consistently advocated for a regional approach to the outbreak and has publically stated that the epidemic would have to end in the entire region before any of the three affected countries would be adequately protected from a recurrence of the outbreak.

The United State believes Liberia’s success strengthens the determination of the peoples of Sierra Leone and Guinea to continue their efforts to reach Zero cases of Ebola.

The U.S further stressed that the success of the response in Liberia demonstrates that the world can beat the disease if everyone works together and respond quickly with the usage of the right tools including rapid diagnosis, contact tracing, surveillance, isolation of cases, safe and dignified burials, community outreach, and dedication.

Liberia was declared Ebola free by the WHO on May 9, 2015. The U.S played a major role leading to the eradication of the tropical virus that left over 4000 Liberians dead. Edited by Othello B. Garblah

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