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Ebola spreads suspicion and rumours in Guinea

AFP                                                       June 7, 2015

Conakry, Guinea --The only possible place to encounter Ebola in Conakry is the main treatment unit, yet elsewhere in Guinea the virus is thriving in a febrile atmosphere of deep mistrust and swirling conspiracy theory....

It is in Guinea — the original epicentre but least-affected country — where the reaction to the fight against Ebola has been the most suspicious, however, manifesting itself in sporadic bloodshed.

Eight members of an outreach team in the southeastern town of Womey were killed by protesters who denied the existence of Ebola and denounced a “white conspiracy” in September last year.

Violence erupted last week in the country’s western provinces, where there are around 20 confirmed cases, with attacks targeting public institutions, ambulances and even health workers.

These examples of the “reluctance” of locals, to employ the official parlance, are igniting new transmission chains and so hampering efforts to stamp out the virus, say the authorities.

Read complete story.

http://gulfnews.com/news/africa/ebola-spreads-suspicion-and-rumours-in-guinea-1.1531265

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Stopping the next pandemic today

OP-ED  WASHINGTON POST,  June 7, 2015

By Ron Klain, the  White House Ebola response coordinator from October 2014 to February.

....To the extent there is discussion of improving the international response to epidemics, the focus has been on the need to reform the World Health Organization. Such reforms are badly needed, but even a fully effective WHO will not close the most gaping holes in the world’s epidemic response system. Even if the WHO did a better job of recognizing outbreaks that pose a risk of epidemic and alerting the world that action is needed, it does not have the substantial response function needed to combat such an epidemic. Recent discussions about creating a WHO response function — assuming that the agency could be trusted to manage it — rely largely on overburdened and underfunded nongovernmental organizations to staff a response. Thus, any new WHO response capacity will lack military-style mobile hospitals ready to be deployed; battalions of medical personnel with accompanying security support to isolate and treat the infectious and the ill; or a medical airlift capacity to move patients to places where they can get help...

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Ebola Virus Disease Outbreak in Nigeria: Transmission Dynamics and Rapid Control

ncbi.nlm.nih.gov - Epidemics. 2015 Jun;11:80-4. doi: 10.1016/j.epidem.2015.03.001. Epub 2015 Mar 21

Abstract

International air travel has already spread Ebola virus disease (EVD) to major cities as part of the unprecedented epidemic that started in Guinea in December 2013. An infected airline passenger arrived in Nigeria on July 20, 2014 and caused an outbreak in Lagos and then Port Harcourt. After a total of 20 reported cases, including 8 deaths, Nigeria was declared EVD free on October 20, 2014. We quantified the impact of early control measures in preventing further spread of EVD in Nigeria and calculated the risk that a single undetected case will cause a new outbreak. We fitted an EVD transmission model to data from the outbreak in Nigeria and estimated the reproduction number of the index case at 9.0 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 5.2-15.6). We also found that the net reproduction number fell below unity 15 days (95% CI: 11-21 days) after the arrival of the index case. Hence, our study illustrates the time window for successful containment of EVD outbreaks caused by infected air travelers.

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Managing the Risk and Impact of Future Epidemics: Options for Public-Private Cooperation

submitted by Denis Gilhooly

World Economic Forum
Prepared in collaboration with the Boston Consulting Group (BCG)

CLICK HERE - Managing the Risk and Impact of Future Epidemics: Options for Public-Private Cooperation

CLICK HERE - REPORT - Managing the Risk and Impact of Future Epidemics: Options for Public-Private Cooperation
(20 page .PDF report)

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa was a public health emergency of new proportions that presented unprecedented challenges for the international community. Aside from the significant social and economic impact it had on many West African countries, the epidemic also triggered a range of innovative, flexible partnership responses from businesses and civil society that complemented the channels of official assistance to affected countries.

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The contribution of Ebola viral load at admission and other patient characteristics to mortality in a Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Ebola Case Management Centre (CMC), Kailahun, Sierra Leone, June –October, 2014

m.jid.oxfordjournals.org - J Infect Dis. (2015) doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiv304 First published online: May 22, 2015

Abstract

This paper describes patient characteristics, including Ebola viral load, associated with mortality in an MSF Ebola case management centre.

Out of 780 admissions between June and October 2014, 525 (67%) were positive for Ebola with a known outcome. The crude mortality rate was 51% (270/525). Ebola viral load (whole blood sample) data was available on 76% (397/525) of patients. Univariate analysis indicated viral load at admission, age, symptom duration prior to admission and distance travelled to the CMC were associated with mortality (p value<0.05). The multivariable model predicted mortality in those with a viral load at admission greater than 10 million copies per millilitre (p value<0.05, Odds Ratio>10), aged 50 years or more (p value=0.08, Odds Ratio=2) and symptom duration prior to admission less than 5 days (p value=0.14). The presence of confusion, diarrhoea and conjunctivitis were significantly higher (p value<0.05) in Ebola patients who died.

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Guinea extends Ebola emergency measures

AFP     JUNE 6, 2015

CONAKRY--Ebola-hit Guinea has extended a health emergency declared in March until the end of June, citing the persistence of the deadly virus in the country, the presidency said on Saturday.


Workers walk at the Donka Ebola treatment center on May 2, 2015 in Conakry (AFP Photo/Cellou Binani)

The decision was taken on Friday by President Alpha Conde, the statement said, after he met his counterpart from Sierra Leone, Ernest Bai Koroma.

In August last year, Conde declared a health emergency for the whole of Guinea. Then on March 28, 2015, he decreed a "reinforced health emergency" for five provinces in the west and southwest of the West African country.

"Given the persistence of the epidemic... in parts of Guinea and Sierra Leone," Conde and Koroma decided "to extend the reinforced emergency measures in their countries until June 30, 2015", the Guinean presidency said.

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http://news.yahoo.com/guinea-extends-ebola-emergency-measures-201127353.html

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West Africa Struggles to Rebuild Its Ravaged Health-Care System

WALL STREET JOURNAL by Betsy McKay  June 4, 2015
HARPER, Liberia --The deadly disease may have receded, but it is still exacting a heavy toll. Run-down, poorly staffed and equipped health facilities allowed Ebola to explode.

 Since it was identified in early 2014, the epidemic has claimed the lives of 507 health-care workers in three West African countries, all of which already were short of medical professionals. The health-care system was so overwhelmed with Ebola victims that many other patients couldn’t receive care for malaria, heart disease or pregnancy complications. That bill is coming due.

“There are more people who are going to die from Ebola, but not have Ebola,” says Paul Farmer, a Harvard professor and co-founder of the Boston-based charity Partners in Health.

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Rethinking the Global Health Architecture

chathamhouse.org

The Centre on Global Health Security is engaging leading thinkers in a process of dialogue, research and analysis on the future of the global health system.

During the past 20 years there has been major progress in public health across the world. Life expectancy has increased and many more people live healthy lives. However, major needs remain, and in many places inequalities in economic status and health have increased. Given that both the development challenges and the economic situation are changing across the world, the global system needs to adapt.

Based on where we are today and future needs, the key questions are:

    Is the system fit for purpose?
    Are the purposes of the different parts of the system clearly defined?
    What is the role of the UN system within an international system that has changed and continues to change?

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Strengthening Data Sharing for Public Health

chathamhouse.org

This project aims to develop guidelines on how to create the right environment for public health data sharing and achieve good practice. The project will take these recommendations to key stakeholders within global health to provide support for pushing the established norms for data sharing towards a model where data are shared as openly as is possible and appropriate.

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Ebola Response Reveals the Need for New Models for Collaboration Between the Private and Public Sectors

A Report by the World Economic Forum and BCG Analyzes the Private Sector's Response to the Ebola Outbreak and Distills Lessons for Public-Private Partnerships in Future Health Crises

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BOSTON CONSULTING GROUP -MARKETWIRED June 4, 2014

CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA-- The private sector played an important role in the global response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa not only by providing financial and in-kind donations but also by acting as a partner to support response activities.

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