Published on NewsOK Modified: August 26, 2014 at 8:33 am •  Published: August 26, 2014
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ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — In a story Aug. 22 about Ebola, The Associated Press erroneously reported that Nigeria's total of confirmed infections was 16. In fact, the number of Ebola cases confirmed by the WHO was 12.

The story also said that patients under surveillance were not restricted. Health officials advised those under surveillance to restrict their movements and avoid contact with others, but they were not forcibly restricted.

A corrected version of the story is below:

Ebola spreads in Nigeria; Liberia has 1,000 cases

Ebola outbreak widens in Nigeria; Liberia cases top 1,000; Experts fear "shadow zones"

By BASHIR ADIGUN and JONATHAN PAYE-LAYLEH

Associated Press

ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — Two alarming new cases of Ebola have emerged in Nigeria, widening the circle of people sickened beyond the immediate group of caregivers who treated a dying airline passenger in one of Africa's largest cities.

The outbreak also continues to spread elsewhere in West Africa, with 142 more cases recorded, bringing the new total to 2,615 with 1,427 deaths, the World Health Organization said Friday.

Most of the new cases are in Liberia, where the government was delivering donated rice to a slum where 50,000 people have been sealed off from the rest of the capital in an attempt to contain the outbreak.

New treatment centers in Liberia are being overwhelmed by patients that were not previously identified. One center with 20 beds opened its doors to 70 possibly infected people, likely coming from "shadow-zones" where people fearing authorities won't let doctors enter, the U.N health agency said.

"This phenomenon strongly suggests the existence of an invisible caseload of patients who are not being detected by the surveillance system," the agency said. This has "never before been seen in an Ebola outbreak."

The two new cases in Nigeria were infected by their spouses, both medical workers who had direct contact with Liberian-American Patrick Sawyer, who flew into Nigeria from Liberia and Togo and infected 11 others before he died in July. The male and female caregivers also then died of Ebola, Health Minister Onyebuchi Chukwu said Friday.

Nigerian officials initially claimed the risk of exposure to others was minimal because Sawyer was whisked into isolation after arriving at the airport. Lagos state health commissioner Jide Idris later acknowledged that Sawyer was not immediately quarantined.

The two new cases were quarantined two days ago while being tested, Chukwu said. They had previously been under surveillance, meaning they were contacted daily to see if they developed any symptoms and they were advised to stay at home and avoid contact with others, but they were not forcibly restricted. Once they showed signs of the disease, they were brought in to a quarantine unit. People who contract Ebola are not contagious until they show symptoms, say health experts.

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