Ebola Essay Example
Causes, Interventions and Recommendations
One of the most threatening health issues that happened over the past six months in some African countries, and then in the United States is a disease called Ebola. It is caused by one of the few virus families about which scientists still have little information (Hewlett, 2007). The 2014 Ebola epidemic was the largest one in history. Over one thousand people all over the world have been the victim of Ebola in 2014 epidemic. Anyone can catch this disease by being in contact with a person, an animal, or a dead body infected by the virus. Controlling contact between the infected people and the non-infected, infection control, and pharmaceutical intervention are said to be helping to stop the virus from spreading. People who work in the hospitals or any type of medical helping Ebola patients are the ones who must be the most careful. In addition to several agencies paying attention to Ebola and constantly fighting with it, there are some simple tips that should be learnt by every individual all over the world to help stop the spread of the virus. Ebola is a public health issue because it can affect everyone all over the world, as it almost did in 2014 outbreak.
Cause and Severity
World Health Organization declares that the majority of cases have been resulted of human to human transmission. Although the origin of the virus is still unknown, Fruit Bats are the most proven suspects.
As in February 11th, 2015, with reference to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 65 new confirmed cases have been reported in Guinea and 76 new ones in Sierra Leone. Overall, Ebola has killed 9253 people in Countries with Widespread Transmission and 15 people in previously affected countries.
According to Mayo Clinic Staff, the risk factors for Ebola include: traveling to Africa where Ebola virus outbreaks have occurred, conducting animal research, specially with monkeys that are imported from Africa or Philippines, providing medical or personal care for sick relatives, and preparing bodies of people who have died of Ebola for burial.
Public agencies involved with this epidemic include: World Health Organization, World Food Programme, Food and Agriculture Organization, UNICEF, Innovative Medicines Initiative, The Public Health Agency of Canada, and numerous others. According to a study conducted recently, improved contact tracing and infection control, along with pharmaceutical intervention can be substantially influential in reducing the number of Ebola cases. The study also points out that these interventions are not expected to show their results overnight; they need a “long-term commitment” to finally terminate the outbreak. Moreover, World Health Organization declares in an article that there are currently no vaccines to be used against the disease, but since the start of the outbreak, the most advanced Ebola vaccine has been under evaluation and is going to be available soon. WHO believes that the first people to receive vaccination when it become available are the “front-line workers”.
Along with all the organizations and agencies, there are also some prevention methods that must be conducted by every single person all over the world to control the spread on the disease. One of the most exposed groups of people to the Ebola virus are the hospital staff. They should use standard precautions before helping an Ebola patient. Being in contact with the bodily fluids of a patient or handling contaminated medical equipments is also of a high risk. Individuals who are diagnosed with the Ebola virus should no be taken care of at home as it does not have a standard environment. To handle animals that are Ebola suspects, special precautions must be considered like using gloves. One of the other serious dangers of Ebola being transferred all over the world is the everyday travels that take place between countries. Airports must control the health status of people traveling from countries that have high number of Ebola patients (like some African countries) and prevent their commute until they are healthy again.
Hewlett, B., & Hewlett, B. (2008). Ebola, culture, and politics: The anthropology of an emerging disease (Student ed.). Belmont, CA: Thomson Higher Education.
Ebola virus and Marburg virus. (n.d.). Retrieved February 16, 2015, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/ebola-virus/basics/risk-factors/con-20031241
Frequently asked questions on Ebola virus disease. (n.d.). Retrieved February 16, 2015, from http://www.who.int/csr/disease/ebola/faq-ebola/en/
Rivers, C., Lofgren, E., Marathe, M., Eubank, S., & Lewis, B. (n.d.). Modeling the Impact of Interventions on an Epidemic of Ebola in Sierra Leone and Liberia – PLOS Currents Outbreaks. Retrieved February 16, 2015, from http://currents.plos.org/outbreaks/article/obk-14-0043-modeling-the-impact-of-interventions-on-an-epidemic-of-ebola-in-sierra-leone-and-liberia/