How Many Ebola Patients Are Being Treated Outside of West Africa?

NEW YORK TIMES          Oct. 7, 2014

At least 14 Ebola cases have been treated outside of West Africa in the current outbreak. Most of these involve health and aid workers who contracted Ebola in West Africa and were transported back to their home country for treatment.

Two people were diagnosed outside of West Africa: one, a Liberian man who began showing symptoms four days after arriving in Dallas, and the other, a Spanish nurse who became ill after treating a missionary in a Madrid Hospital. These cases are compiled from reports by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, Doctors Without Borders and other official agencies.

See chart and full article

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/07/31/world/africa/ebola-virus-outbreak-qa.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&version=HpSum&module=photo-spot-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news

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The Fight Against Ebola Is a Fight Against Inequality

Commentary by Jim Young Kim, President of the World Bank Group 
                                                              Oct. 6, 2014

As the spread of the Ebola virus in West Africa shows, the importance of reducing inequality could not be more clear. The battle against the virus is a fight on many fronts -- human lives and health foremost among them.

But the fight against Ebola is also a fight against inequality. The knowledge and infrastructure to treat the sick and contain the virus exists in high- and middle-income counties. However, over many years, we have failed to make these things accessible to low-income people in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. So now thousands of people in these countries are dying because, in the lottery of birth, they were born in the wrong place.

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jim-yong-kim/the-fight-against-ebola-i_b_5938716.html

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No Ebola screening for arrivals to UK - Public Health England

BBC                   Oct. 7, 2014

There are no plans to introduce Ebola screening for those arriving in the UK, Public Health England (PHE) has said.

President Barack Obama said on Monday that the US planned to screen incoming air passengers for the virus.

But PHE said this was not recommended by the World Health Organization and would mean screening "huge numbers of low-risk people".

It also said if a case of Ebola was reported in the UK, the affected person would be isolated and protective measures would be implemented.

Dr Brian McCloskey, director of global health at PHE, said: "Our robust, well-developed and well-tested NHS systems for managing unusual infectious diseases are all active permanently, and always available and regularly tested and proven to be effective.

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http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-29518342

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FACT SHEET: The U.S. Response to the Ebola Epidemic in West Africa

The White House Text of Fact Sheet on USG responses to the Ebola Crisis

Office of the Press Secretary                              For Immediate Release October 06, 2014T

Since the first cases of Ebola were reported in West Africa in March 2014, the United States has mounted a whole-of-government response to contain and eliminate the epidemic at its source, while also taking prudent measures at home. The President last month outlined a stepped-up U.S. response, leveraging more thoroughly the unique capabilities of the U.S. military to support the civilian-led response in West Africa. Domestically, we have prepared for the diagnosis of an Ebola case on U.S. soil and have measures in place to stop this and any potential future cases in their tracks. 

Specifically, our strategy is predicated on four key goals:

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CDC Update on First Ebola Case Diagnosed in the United States - Oct. 5, 2014

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) - October 5, 2014

CDC Telebriefing: CDC update on first Ebola case diagnosed in the United States.

(READ PRESS BRIEFING TRANSCRIPT HERE)

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C-SPAN - Dr. Gavin Macgregor-Skinner - Western Africa Ebola Outbreak

c-span.org - October 4, 2014

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'In 1976 I Discovered Ebola - Now I Fear an Unimaginable Tragedy'

Professor Peter Piot, the Director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine: ‘Around June it became clear to me there was something different about this outbreak. I began to get really worried’ Photograph: Leon Neal/AFP

theguardian.com - October 4, 2014
Rafaela von Bredow and Veronika Hackenbroch

. . . "it should be clear to all of us: This isn't just an epidemic any more. This is a humanitarian catastrophe. We don't just need care personnel, but also logistics experts, trucks, jeeps and foodstuffs. Such an epidemic can destabilise entire regions. I can only hope that we will be able to get it under control. I really never thought that it could get this bad" . . .

(READ COMPLETE ARTICLE)

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Obama: U.S. Will Beef Up Airport Screenings for Ebola

UPDATED  With additional information  (Scroll below).

TIME

By Zeke J. Miller                              Oct. 6. 2014                5:24 PM

President Barack Obama said Monday that the U.S. is working on additional passenger screenings for airline passengers flying from Ebola-stricken West Africa, two weeks after a Liberian man infected with the disease entered the country.

Officials are “going to be working on protocols to do additional passenger screenings both at the source and here in the United States,” Obama said, addressing reporters following a briefing on his administration’s response to the epidemic in Africa and efforts to keep the disease from spreading to the U.S. “All of these things make me confident that here in the United States at least the chances of an outbreak, of an epidemic here are extraordinarily low.”

The president did not give specifics on the new screening measures, and Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) declined to elaborate further in an interview with CNN after the meeting.

 

 

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Spain minister: Madrid nurse has tested positive for Ebola after treating Africa patient

 By JORGE SAINZ, Associated Press                            Oct. 6, 2014

MADRID (AP) — In what is the first reported incident of Ebola transmission outside Africa, a Spanish nurse who treated a missionary for the disease at a Madrid hospital tested positive for the disease, Spain's health minister said Monday.

The female nurse was part of the medical team that treated a 69-year-old Spanish priest who died in a hospital last month after being flown back from Sierra Leone, where he was posted, Health Minister Ana Mato said.

The woman went to the Alcorcon hospital in the Madrid suburbs with a fever and was placed in isolation. Mato said the infection was confirmed by two tests and that the nurse was admitted to a hospital on Sunday.

The Spanish priest the nurse helped treat was Manuel Garcia Viejo, who died Sept. 25, becoming the second Spanish missionary to fall victim to the deadly virus. In August, a 75-year-old Spanish priest, Miguel Pajares, was flown back to Spain from Liberia, but died after being treated with the experimental Ebola medicine ZMapp.

Link to full aticle

http://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2014/10/06/spanish-nurse-is-suspected-of-ebola-infection

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FDA approves use of experimental Ebola drug

THE HILL                     Oct. 6, 2014
By Sarah Ferris

Washington --The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Monday approved the use of an experimental drug that has been hailed as one of the pharmaceutical industry's best chances at fighting the Ebola virus.

Chimerix, a North Carolina-based biopharmaceutical company, announced Monday that it has received approval to administer an antiviral drug called brincidofovir that has successfully treated Ebola in lab tests.

The drug has also been tested by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health, though it is not expected to win approval for wide public use until late 2016.

 Another drug that has been used to treat Ebola-infected patients, TKM-Ebola, has also been permitted for emergency use by the FDA.... The drug, produced by Canadian drugmaker Tekmira, was given a "fast track" designation and is still undergoing clinical trials. 

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http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/219856-fda-approves-use-of-experimental-ebola-drug

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U.N. urges Liberia health workers fighting Ebola not to stage go-slow

REUTERS                                   Oct, 6, 2014

MONROVIA (Reuters) - The World Health Organization's representative in Liberia pleaded on Monday with healthcare workers on the front line of an Ebola epidemic not to stage industrial action in their bid for better terms and hazard pay.

Nearly 2,000 people have died from Ebola in Liberia out of at least 3,696 infected. The Ebola epidemic has killed more than 3,400 people in that country and its neighbors Sierra Leone and Guinea.

The National Health Workers Association of Liberia is planning a go-slow from Friday because money promised by the government has not been paid to their satisfaction, the union said last week. The union, which represents thousands of health workers, also questions clauses in the contracts its members are to sign with the government and its partners.

"My appeal to all the health workers is that you have been so brave to go and work in the ETU's (Ebola Treatment Units). This is not the moment to compromise all that you have achieved," Peter Graaff, the U.N. health agency's Liberia representative, told a news conference.

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http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/10/06/us-health-ebola-liberia-idUSKCN0HV1P220141006

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Sierra Leone records 121 Ebola deaths in a single day

REUTERS                                                OCT. 5, 2014

FREETOWN Reuters)  Sierra Leone recorded 121 deaths from Ebola and scores of new infections in one of the single deadliest days since the disease appeared in the West African country more than four months ago, government health statistics showed on Sunday.

The figures, which covered the period through Saturday, put the total number of deaths at 678, up from 557 the day before. The daily statistics compiled by Sierra Leone's Emergency Operations Centre also showed 81 new cases of the hemorrhagic fever.

Britain and China have sent personnel to Sierra Leone. Cuba dispatched a 165-member medical team, including specialists and nurses, to Sierra Leone last week. The country's deputy health and sanitation minister Madina Rahman said on Saturday that the Cuban team's mission would last at least six months.

Full Story

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Ebola Help for Sierra Leone Is Nearby, but Delayed on the Docks

NEW YORK TIMES        OCT. 6, 2014

New York Times describes in detail how disorganized local government response, demands for shipping fee payments, and perhaps even politics, have delayed unloading medical supplies sitting on the docks in Sierra Lenone.

By Adam Nossiter

Freetown, Sierra Leone -- A shipping container packed with protective gowns, gloves, stretchers, mattresses and other medical supplies needed to help fight Sierra Leone’s exploding Ebola epidemic has been...locked inside a dented container at the port since Aug. 9.

“We are still just hoping (!!!) — which sounds like BEGGING — that this container should be cleared,” one government official wrote in a frantic email to his superiors, weeks after the container arrived.

In many ways, the delay reflects what some in the growing ranks of international officials pouring into this nation to fight Ebola describe as a chaotic, disorganized government response to the epidemic.

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As Ebola patient in Texas fights for his life, his family copes with stigma and isolation

EBOLA VICTIM IN DALLAS IS IN CRITICAL CONDITION WHILE FAMILY MEMBERS SUFFER FROM STIGMA AND ISOLATION

WASHINGTON POST

By DeNeen L. Brown, Abby Phillip and Sean Sullivan October 5 at 8:05 PM

DALLAS — As a Liberian man diagnosed with Ebola was fighting to survive Sunday in a Texas hospital, his worried family members and others who were in contact with him said they are being ostracized by the local Liberian community, which is struggling to cope with fear, isolation and the stigma associated with the deadly disease.

A cleanup crew on Sunday sanitizes the apartment where Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan was staying before being admitted to a hospital in Dallas. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

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Medical Research: Ebola Therapy Protects Severely Ill Monkeys

nature.com

Thomas W. Geisbert

Nature 514, 41–43 (02 October 2014) doi:10.1038/nature13746 - Published online 29 August 2014

A blend of three monoclonal antibodies has completely protected monkeys against a lethal dose of Ebola virus. Unlike other post-infection therapies, the treatment works even at advanced stages of the disease. See Article p.47

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v514/n7520/full/nature13746.html

Reversion of advanced Ebola virus disease in nonhuman primates with ZMapp

Nature 514, 47–53 (02 October 2014) doi:10.1038/nature13777
Received 05 August 2014 - Accepted 21 August 2014 - Published online 29 August 2014

Abstract

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