It’s difficult to understand how one person coming to the U.S. with Ebola constitutes a crisis. The 75,000 patients per year that die of hospital acquired infections looks more like a crisis. The 443,000 deaths per year related to smoking is clearly a crisis. CNN and Fox news seem to be able to stir panic with constant “we’re all going to die” mentality. The most helpful suggestion from the media is to quarantine Texas.
Helene Cooper of the New York Times was featured on PBS 10/19/2014. She recently returned from a reporting trip to Liberia where she concluded Liberians show less panic than people in the U.S. She attributes this to Liberian’s having a better understanding of how the disease is transmitted. The observation rings true since most US news reporting does not attempt to educate, just analyze incomplete information. When this is all over congress will owe CDC director Dr. Thomas Frieden a massive apology for their rabid questioning … do they ever apologize?
The disease is transmitted by bodily fluids, usually by touching a person (see picture) with symptoms (vomiting, diarrhea and fever) or touching their secretions. In Liberia the population avoids touching each other. But, the real risk is for healthcare workers — because people with symptoms go to the hospital. The patient who came from Liberia with the disease died in a Dallas hospital but his fiancé and other people he lived with did not get sick! It is the nurses who are at risk and two of them (so far) have contracted the illness.
It’s good to hear the U.S. military is erecting mobile hospitals in West Africa — hopefully more countries will help.