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When some initial cases first appeared in Liberia's northern Lofa County back in March, health officials initially thought they had it under control. But in June, a resident of a district of New Kru Town known as Carpet Street died, as did several others. According to Dr Bernice Dahn, Liberia's chief medical officer, three of the victims passed away while they were being sheltered in a local church ‚Äď a sign of how many some people believe the disease is a curse that can be cured by prayer or witchcraft.
"We must stop keeping people suspected of Ebola in our churches on ground that we can heal them," she warned at the time. "The churches are not hospitals."
Liberian hospitals, however, do not always inspire the kind of faith that people have in Liberian churches. A fortnight ago, one the main local health facilities, Redemption Hospital, was stoned by a mob after a woman died in there from a...