I recognize that Ebola is incredibly rare in the United States, at least as of this writing. But it now exists here, is very contagious, and is incredibly deadly (50%-90% of those known to be infected, die, according to whom you ask. The WHO official statistic is 70% mortality.) To put this in perspective, the H1N1 flu pandemic of 2009-2010 infected approximately 60.8 million people; of those, about 12,500 died. If as many were infected with Ebola as got H1N1 (very unlikely, I understand); you would be looking at more than 40 million deaths.
It’s pretty frightening to imagine the impact of large-scale infection. While viruses like this tend to die out more quickly than the flu, we have been warned by the WHO that we have a limited amount of time to contain this disease in order to avoid the worst global medical crisis in recent memory.
There is hope; as of this writing Nigeria is believed to be one week away from being declared Ebola-free; barring re-infection. Yet, simultaneously in Sierra Leon, officials say the disease has defeated them.
We have several people in the United States currently infected, and being treated in Dallas, TX. The only US death so far was that of Thomas Eric Duncan, the now-infamous Patient 0, who contracted Ebola in Africa and then traveled to Dallas. He died October 8.
I hope this background info is helpful to those getting caught up on the situation.
While it’s important to always be prepared for a pandemic, especially the flu in winter, the Ebola crisis need special attention. What can we do to protect our families, should things go badly and the virus spreads?
Preventative measures listed on info-graphics from the infected regions include such helpful tips as to avoid eating bush meat and to stay away from monkeys and bats:
In my next post, I’ll share what I am doing to help boost my family’s immunity, specifically against the flu, viruses such as EV-D68 and yes, Ebola.