Evening Ebola Update, Mon, 12/29: NY Times summary of one year of EBOV/How WHO contained district EBOV outbreak/Scot HCW travels home with EBOV   Leave a comment

test12/29/14

Dear Colleagues:

l.  NY Times has an long Health Section article on ‘How EBOV Roared Back’ this past spring after the outbreak appeared to be contained.  The authors say the causes of the EBOV resurgence include: poor communication between WHO leaders in Africa and WHO HQ in Geneva; no experience with EBOV in West Africa; too few medical assets sent to West Africa last spring; remote location of the rural EBOV cases; cutback in WHO funding by UN; distrust of whites by West Africans; poor health care infrastructure in West Africa after their civil wars.  The NY TImes article spreads the ‘blame’ for the EBOV epidemic over many organizations and people.

2.  In reality, this EBOV epidemic ‘came out of the blue’ in a one year old baby from rural Guinea.  Babies are not the usual category of patients to become infected with EBOV so the outbreak spread rapidly until there was an epidemic.  See the NY Times article at: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/30/health/how-ebola-roared-back.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=a-lede-package-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0

3.  WHO website reports how the Kailahun District, Sierra Leone, EBOV outbreak was contained rapidly in the past few weeks.  All the chiefs of the chiefdoms in Kailahun were actively engaged so that all chiefs joined the WHO fight.  Educators and contact tracers and burial teams were sent to Kailahun rapidly and in adequate numbers to contain the EBOV.  Everything went right; when turned away from villages or possible EBOV patients, the WHO team just returned the next day.
See the article at: http://who.int/features/2014/kailahun-beats-ebola/en/

4.  Reuters reports that the FDA just approved the Roche RT-PCR test for EBOV.  This test is a boon to HCW in West Africa because the test makes the diagnosis of EBOV in 3 hours, rather than one or more days.  See the announcement at: http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/12/29/us-health-ebola-roche-idUSKBN0K70TA20141229.  A faster EBOV test results in more rapid isolation and treatment of EBOV patients, which is key for reducing the reproductive rate, R.

5.  ABC News reports that a Scottish HCW in Sierra Leone flew British Airways home to Glasglow yesterday via Casablanca and London.  When he arrived he Glasglow, he developed fever and other symptoms of EBOV.  His EBOV test was positive; he will be transported and treated at Royal Free Hospital in London, which has a special isolation unit for EBOV patients.  See: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/scotland-confirms-case-ebola/story?id=27883071test   His contacts during the flight home and stopovers are all being traced and followed.

RGL, MD

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Posted December 30, 2014 by levittrg in Ebola

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