CDC chief drops worst-case Ebola estimate

CDC (AP file photo)

NEW YORK (AP) — A U.S. health official says the government’s worst-case scenario forecast for the Ebola epidemic in West Africa won’t happen.

In September, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated the number of people with Ebola could explode to as many as 1.4 million by mid-January without more help. But on Wednesday, CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden said, “We don’t think projections from the summer will come to pass.”

Frieden did not provide new estimates. He was speaking at a U.S. Senate hearing in Washington. So far, there have been more than 14,000 cases.

The CDC estimates were based on conditions in late August, before an international surge in medical aid. That work seems to have helped slow the epidemic in Liberia, the hardest-hit of the three countries.

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