Ebola Research Paper

Superior Essays
Lakia Andrews
Professor Sloan
English 110
18 November 2014
The Ebola Epidemic In a country where people are dying every day from different diseases, Ebola has become the talk of the year. Although this disease has been around for several years, it is now being acknowledged. A few Americans have been forced into quarantine because of the outbreak. The disease can only be spread through a transfer of bodily fluids, unlike diseases like the flu and the common cold. Government officials are trying to limit the transmission of Ebola; therefore, people who have not shown any symptoms of the virus are being quarantined because they went to or came from West Africa. Some are even saying that members of the government should shut down airline travel
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The media inflated the outbreak and alarmed its viewers. The Ebola epidemic could be seen on nearly every news channel and heard on almost every radio broadcast station. Compared to other viruses like the flu, Ebola is not as bad. Nearly 40,000 Americans die every year from contracting the flu virus. It is unlikely for the disease to pose a threat to the United States. In fact, there have only been six known cases of Ebola in the United States. The virus first came to America by a man named Thomas Eric Duncan. Duncan became ill in Dallas after coming from Liberia to visit his family. On October 8, 2014 Duncan died from the infection. However, before he died, he had already spread the sickness to Nina Pham, a twenty six year old nurse, and Amber Vinson, a twenty nine year old nurse. Pham and Vinson are now being quarantined. Kaci Hickox, a Maine nurse, was forced into quarantine after returning from caring for Ebola patients in West Africa. Hickox’s case caused controversy amongst Americans. Hickox insisted that she posed no risk to others because Ebola-infected people are not contagious before developing symptoms (Oelsner). Although Hickox showed no symptoms, Maine health officials still made her go into quarantine because they did not want to take a risk and possibly allow her to spread the disease. This triggered many Americans and made them question if it was necessary for her to be forced into …show more content…
The average time between contracting the infection and the start of symptoms is eight to ten days (Akharumere). However, symptoms can occur anywhere from two to twenty-one days after exposure. Symptoms include: diarrhea, vomiting, headache, fatigue, fever, unexplained bleeding or bruising, etc. On August 8, the World Health Organization (WHO) classified the outbreak as a public-health emergency of international concern (Sifferlin). Reducing the spread of Ebola in West Africa so far seems impossible for aid organizations, regional governments and the international community. Many places in West Africa lack proper resources causing the containment of the virus to be difficult. Currently, there is no vaccine for Ebola. All doctors and health professionals can do is provide supportive therapy for Ebola’s victims (Sifferlin). The American Ebola patients have been treated with an experimental drug called ZMapp. ZMapp was developed by Mapp Biopharmaceutical has materials that grow in tobacco plants (Fry). There is no laboratory evidence of Zmapp’s effectiveness; however, it seems like the experimental drug has helped the patients (Sifferlin). Officials in West Africa are still having trouble trying to cure their victims because their resources are limited. This disease is also affecting health care workers. Many West African health officials do not have access to appropriate protective equipment which increases their

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