Why it’s wrong to compare Zika to Ebola

Clare Wenham, London School of Economics and Political Science A committee of the World Health Organisation has declared the Zika virus a global public health emergency. This designation gives the WHO and member states the ability to recommend limits on travel to prevent the potential spread of disease and to call for emergency measures and …

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Ebola over, but WHO failure pinned on politicians

By Tania Rabesandratana Just as the World Health Organization (WHO) celebrates the end of the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, an academic paper says governments “bear the bulk of responsibility” for the UN body’s failures during the 2014 Ebola outbreak. Yesterday (14 January), the WHO declared the end of the most recent outbreak in Liberia. …

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Speed of Ebola spread linked to poverty

By Rohan Mehra Last year’s Ebola outbreak spread fastest and was hardest to control in poor communities, says a study which argues that future efforts to combat highly infectious diseases should target such areas. A paper published in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases at the end of 2015 showed that people in poorer parts of Montserrado …

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Can we treat Ebola with plasma? The results are in

Peter Horby, University of Oxford and Catrin Moore, University of Oxford During the Ebola outbreak of 1995 in the Democratic Republic of Congo, eight patients with Ebola were given blood transfusions from people who had recently recovered from Ebola. Seven of them survived. The blood of people who have recently recovered from an infection contains …

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Ebola virus found in survivors’ semen, 9 months later

By Pauline Okoth Preliminary results of a study in Sierra Leone documenting Ebola virus persistence in body fluids have confirmed the presence of the virus in survivors’ semen up to nine months after the onset of infection. The WHO declared Sierra Leone free of Ebola virus transmission in the human population last month (7 November), …

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