Sierra Leone on lockdown

Close to 2.5 million people across three districts in Sierra Leone will be confined to their homes for three days, starting 27 March, as part of an effort to end the Ebola outbreak. 

While the number of new reported Ebola cases has been on the decline in recent weeks in Sierra Leone, the latest data from the World Health Organization shows that there were still 55 new cases reported in the week ending March 15. The majority of these cases were in Sierra Leone’s Western Area, which includes the capital, Freetown, and to the north in the Port Loko and Bombali districts.

During the government enforced measures, health workers will go house-to-house, looking for anyone showing signs of illness. Local authorities say that a similar lockdown, which took place nationwide for 72 hours in September, helped discover more than 100 “hidden” cases.

The Ministry of Health says the goal this time is to find the last remaining unreported cases, so that they can reach their goal of being Ebola-free by mid-April.

The map below shows the three worst regions in Sierra Leone that are being restricted. Click on a region to see the number of cases.