l. USA Today reports that the Pentagon will organize a 30 person Ebola rapid response team to be deployed to sites of Ebola infection in the U.S. The HHS (Secretary Burwell) requested the Pentagon to organize this team. (President Obama held a 75 minute meeting on Ebola at The White House last evening), The team will take 7 days to organize (20 critical care nurses; 5 physicians; 5 trainers in PPE and infection control) and will train 7 days at Fort Sam Houston in Texas. This action comes very soon after Mr. Klain was appointed by President Obama as Ebola ‘czar’. The CDC had already said that rapid response teams would be organized by the CDC.
2. USA Today reports that the Canadian vaccine shipped to WHO for West African testing is the VSV (vesicular stomatitis virus) vaccine. This vaccine is a recombinant VSV which produces an Ebola GP (glycoprotein) in place of the VSV GP. The body then builds an immune response against the Ebola GP and thus the Ebola virus. See the original report by Dr. Geisbert and Feldmann in the Journal of Infectious Disease at: http://jid.oxfordjournals.org/content/204/suppl_3/S1075.full.pdf.
3. NBC News reports that Mr. Banbury, head of the U.N. Mission on Ebola, says the world was not prepared for the rapid spread of Ebola because all prior outbreaks had been contained. (WHO will explain what went wrong and why after the outbreak is contained). Dr. Fauci reported on Meet the Press that the U.S. has 4 Ebola hospitals with 11 Ebola beds. Fauci says we need more Ebola hospitals and more Ebola beds. I expect designation of regional Ebola hospitals will be Mr. Klain’s next action. These hospitals should receive extra reimbursement for their designation because of the cost of ramping up the hospitals for Ebola patients and training staff. I recommend Alpha Pro Tech full body suits and MaxAir 800 Series PAPRs.
4. Dr. Fauci does not agree with NIH Director Collins’ comment that NIH would have an Ebola vaccine if NIH purchasing power had been maintained over each of the last 10 years. Dr. Fauci agrees that research has slowed in all divisions of NIH but that does mean more purchasing power would have led to an Ebola vaccine. (Over the last 10 years the NIH budget has remained unchanged, and that has meant a 23% loss of purchasing power because of inflation).
As you can see, today’s Ebola news is mostly political news, as today is Sunday in the U.S.