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With reports that two Americans have now been diagnosed with the Ebola virus while working to help Africans in Liberia, Western focus has shifted to the dangers of an Ebola outbreak. According to Samaritan’s Purse, the group for which both Americans work, doctor Kent Brantly contracted Ebola and then isolated himself; Nancy Writebol, an employee of Serving in Mission, was helping Ebola patients as well when she was infected.


The World Health Organization, according to CNN.com, has measured the current outbreak in West Africa as the “deadliest ever,” including at least 1,093 people in Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia. CNN states, “Of the 1,093 confirmed, probable and suspected cases, 660 people have died.”


So, here’s what you need to know about Ebola:


Transmission. Scientists speculate that original outbreaks come from human-animal contact. The World Health Organization states:


Ebola is introduced into the human population through close contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected animals. In Africa, infection has been documented through the handling of infected chimpanzees, gorillas, fruit bats, monkeys, forest antelope and porcupines found ill or dead or in the rainforest.Scissors-32x32.png

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Liberian Official: Ebola Outbreak ‘Is Above The Control Of The National Government’


CHARLOTTE, N.C. (CBS Charlotte/AP) — A Liberian health official says the Ebola outbreak is now above the control of its government.

“Our government has declared this now as a humanitarian crisis that is above the control of the national government,” Tolbert Nyenswah, Liberia’s assistant minister of health, told CBS News.

More than 700 people have died in four western African nations during the largest Ebola outbreak ever, with over 320 known cases in Liberia alone. One American died while contracting the virus in Liberia. Two other American medical missionary workers also contracted Ebola.

“This virus, if it is not taken care of, will be a global pandemic,” Nyenswah told CBS News, calling for more international aid to help treat the sick and stop the spreading of the disease.

The Peace Corps has now temporarily evacuated 340 volunteers from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone after two members were exposed to the virus. CBS News reports those two volunteers have been isolated.


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World Ebola fears grow with Europe and Asia on alert


London (AFP) - Fears that the west African Ebola outbreak could spread to other continents grew with European and Asian countries on alert and a leading medical charity warning the epidemic was out of control.


Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said the crisis gripping Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone would only get worse and warned there was no overarching strategy to handle the world's worst outbreak of the disease.


US Christian charity Samaritan's Purse was temporarily withdrawing its non-essential staff from Liberia, it said, citing regional "instability and ongoing security issues".


Hong Kong announced quarantine measures for suspected cases, although one woman arriving from Africa with possible symptoms tested negative, while the EU said it was ready to deal with the threat.


The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has held talks with global health officials on potential measures to halt the spread of the disease.Scissors-32x32.png


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Ebola: Spider's web of infection is growing as hunt continues for 30,000 'victims' of outbreak


The hunt for people in contact with deadly Ebola was dramatically escalated tonight as the risk of infection spread across the globe like a giant spider’s web.


Initially health officials wanted to trace only a few hundred passengers on two planes which had carried victim Patrick Sawyer, 40.


But – as Cabinet ministers held an emergency Cobra meeting in London – the search was widened to find up to 30,000 people who could be hosting the organism which kills 90% of sufferers.


The list includes anyone at one of four airports visited by American dad-of-three Sawyer, and those in contact with him in Nigeria’s capital Lagos, home to 17 million, where he died five days ago.


Mike Noyes, of Action Aid, said: “This is the worst Ebola outbreak the world has ever seen.


"The most worrying thing is not just the numbers of people dying, but how long it is going on for.Scissors-32x32.png


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NEW YORK – Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is on record that Ebola poses little risk to the U.S. population, the agency still published guidance for airline flight crews, cleaning personnel and cargo workers regarding safe handling of infected passengers.


The advisory begins by describing Ebola as “a severe, often-fatal disease” that while rare, can spread from person to person, especially among health-care staff and other people who have close contact with an infected person.


The advisory then notes the likelihood of contracting Ebola is extremely low unless a person has direct contact with the bodily fluids of a person or animal that is infected and showing symptoms.


Trying to dampen fears of travel to West Africa, the location of the current outbreak, the advisory comments that a fever in a person who has traveled or lived in an area where Ebola is present is “likely to be caused by a more common infectious disease, but the person would need to be evaluated by a health care provider to be sure.”Scissors-32x32.png


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Emory Healthcare(Atlanta) to treat Ebola patient


The Atlanta Journal-Constitution


Emory University Hospital is expected to receive a patient infected with the deadly Ebola virus within the next several days, the university announced Thursday.


It’s unclear when exactly the patient will arrive, according to a statement from Emory. The Clifton Road hospital has a specially-built isolation unit to treat patients exposed to certain serious infectious diseases. Set up in collaboration with the Atlanta-based U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the unit is physically separate from other patient areas and is one of only four such facilities in the country.Scissors-32x32.png


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Congress Returns to Washington for Special Hearing on Ebola


The House Foreign Affairs Committee is now holding a special subcommittee hearing on the ongoing Ebola outbreak in Africa. Members of the committee interrupted their August recess to hold a hearing on the critical issue hearing important testimony from disease experts.

The hearing is chaired by Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ).


Reported by Charlie Spiering, 3:39 PM: During the hearing, Williams admitted that she did not have the exact date of diplomatic cables from embassies in Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Liberia about the ebola crisis.

Williams awkwardly checked her notes for the dates, but ended up having to take the question.

“I will say however we are in daily communication with our embassies,” she said. “If not through cables, through emails, through telephone, we are in constant control.”


Reported by Charlie Spiering, 3:25 PM: Frieden said that if a patient was not sick with Ebola they could not infect other people.Scissors-32x32.png


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Air Ebola: Four Direct Flights into the USA From African Hotspots

J. Christian Adams



With Ebola raging through West Africa, how long would it take for the deadly virus to arrive in the United States? According to flight timetables, about 12 hours. Here are four direct flights from Ebola hotspots straight into the USA.

1. United 143 Lagos to Houston


This flight arrives at 5 in the morning from Lagos, Nigeria, a place where Belmont Club had this frightening account of the intersection of corruption and disease. It involved an Ebola victim, upon learning he was infected, urinating on health care workers in a rage. They too ultimately died. The amazing part of the story is how corrupt officials tried to spring the patient free because of his connections.Scissors-32x32.png




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  • 1 month later...

CDC: Doctors, nurses fleeing Ebola hospitals, virus not contained


A new and remarkably candid on-the-ground audit from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the Ebola crisis in Liberia said that doctors and nurses have fled hospitals in the infection zone and that obstacles to killing the virus remain.


The analysis of four remote Liberian counties conducted by local and CDC officials that were Ebola-free in August revealed that massive amounts of aid are still needed in the areas to fight the virus, which can be spread as simply as by burying a dead victim.


While the CDC said locals are getting a handle on the crisis, it warned, “obstacles to preventing spread of Ebola remain, and personal protective equipment, sufficient personnel for effective contact tracing and case management, efficient patient transport and regional diagnostic laboratory capabilities are urgently needed.”Scissors-32x32.png


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The White House has decided that now is the time to start “working on protocols” to prevent the spread of Ebola into the United States.

President Obama demanded action from the international community on Monday, stating, “We have not seen other countries step up as aggressively as they need to.” However, he also revealed that the United States is “working on protocols to do additional passenger screening, both at the source (in West Africa) and here in the United States,” USA Today reported.

Obama did not seem too worried, however, as he on Monday and in other public appearances has repeatedly said that the chances of a widespread Ebola outbreak in the US is “extremely low.”

On Tuesday, the US officials announced that airports are going to start screening passengers for symptoms of Ebola. Some have questioned whether the aforementioned screening tactic could succeed, being that the incubation period from time of infection can be as long as three weeks.Scissors-32x32.png


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