Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Now is the time to stop the Ebola epidemic!

This is from last week. The current epidemic is no longer contained in three countries, but has spread to Nigeria and Congo. The time to stop the spread of an emergent disease is "as soon as possible". With this disease, which kills half those who get sick, it is especially urgent to wipe it out.

The map shows outbreaks dating back to 1976. We know that Ebola (and other diseases that can effect people) exists in animal populations in Africa. Ebola outbreaks, and outbreaks of other new diseases, will occur in the future. The world needs a better epidemiological surveillance system that will identify such outbreaks very, very quickly; the world needs an emerging disease response system that will stop emerging epidemics before they do what this Ebola epidemic has done.

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