With the death toll from the virus now approaching 60, health officials across Europe are bringing in life-saving steps in hopes of countering the spread of the disease.
According to the BBC, Britain is closing all schools and all boarders are now vaccinated against the deadly disease. Schools in France, Italy, Belgium, Portugal, and the Netherlands are among those taking similar action.
To that end, the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, visited hospitals in the Midlands and did several home visits in the affected regions.
The virus, which is transmitted by respiratory droplets, is rare, but deadly — with fatalities up at more than 50 percent in many countries, and 20 percent in Spain. Of the 61 confirmed cases so far, 47 of the infections have resulted in death.
However, health officials do not believe that the virus is out of control, and say it does not appear to be spreading outside of isolated epidemics, reports The Guardian.
One key part of the fight to curb the spread of the virus is to direct vaccinations to areas with high reported cases, where healthcare workers may be at risk for contracting the illness. Health workers were especially important in controlling a severe outbreak of the flu in the early 1970s.
In Belgium, the country is examining whether baby formula, water, or other foods collected from people who may have been infected have come into contact with feces, the virus or other unsafe substances in some form.
Blood samples from victims have also been collected, as well as those from the dead, so that doctors can ensure the virus did not spread in hospitals. Though some government officials have speculated that the rate of deaths might rise due to more people contracting the virus, other studies have shown otherwise.
In one case, a 16-year-old migrant living in the southeastern Spanish province of Murcia has contracted the illness and died from it, according to Le Progressiste, though health officials have not confirmed the possibility of Ebola. She is believed to have contracted the virus in Niger.
Doctors in Madrid on Wednesday performed an emergency lung operation on a 13-year-old Afghan girl who is one of the world’s youngest cases of the disease. The girl, named Milad A, has undergone a quadruple lung transplant in a pediatric cancer center, because she did not have enough healthy lungs to survive.
The country also took a rare step and sent a state plane to bring in a national health education officer to investigate and address the concerns about the virus.
They also put a quarantined 20 people in hospital before proceeding with screening and treatment, reports The Guardian.
With governments throughout Europe and the Middle East implementing restrictions and life-saving measures, the death toll continues to rise, hitting 24 in France, 10 in Italy, 10 in Portugal, three in Portugal, two in the Netherlands, two in Spain, and two in Switzerland.
Editor’s note: This article is updated frequently to reflect the latest scientific findings and breaking news.