In an attempt to counteract what the World Health Organization says is an "invisible caseload" in West Africa's Ebola outbreak, Sierra Leone passed a law on Friday making it illegal for residents to hide Ebola patients.
The new law includes up to two years of jail time for anyone found guilty, but officials said the strict terms were necessary in a country that has recorded 910 Ebola cases and 392 deaths so far. WHO officials believe the number of people infected with Ebola is much higher than recorded, but that many people are choosing to hide, for fear of being stigmatized.
Sierra Leone's majority leader, Ibrahim Bundu, said his country's crisis is in part due to "abandonment and isolation from those we viewed to be our biggest friends," The Associated Press reports.
Ivory Coast, Gabon, Senegal, South Africa, and Cameroon have all imposed border closings or restrictions in an attempt to keep the disease contained to the four countries that already have confirmed Ebola cases.