Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a meeting of 20 government agencies to discuss New Zealand’s response to the threat of Ebola, reflected a “high level of preparedness” within the Government.
The Inter-Agency Pandemic Group includes police and the ministries of Defence, Civil Defence Emergency Management, Foreign Affairs and Trade and Primary Industries.
The group met in Wellington today – a yearly meeting, but with attention squarely focused on Ebola, Coleman said.
The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has already killed over 4500 people, mostly in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone, since it emerged 10 months ago. Experts have said the world could face 10,000 new cases a week in two months if authorities don’t take stronger steps to fight the deadly virus.
Cases have since been confirmed in the United States and parts of Europe.
Coleman said the risk of the infectious disease reaching New Zealand was remote, but New Zealand had to be prepared for the worst.
Actually, at this stage Â I think the risk of Ebola reaching New Zealand is a certainty, Â The disease is still spreading in an expansionary fashion. Â Read more »