More than a year ago Ebola hit West Africa hard. As quarantine periods end, we'll look at the lessons learned in the outbreak.
The Ebola outbreak that roiled the world in 2014 appears to be finally wrapping up as the world – and West Africa in particular – come to the end of 2015. Quarantines ending for last patients. Questions lingering about how Ebola may linger, subtly invisible. And lessons learned – globally and locally. For health workers in Africa, some of those lessons were cruel. Ostracized for doing the necessary in handling dead bodies. Risking their own lives. And then, for some, never paid for their critical labor. This hour On Point, lessons for next time in the latest great Ebola scare.
-- Tom Ashbrook
Dr. Nahid Bhadelia, doctor specializing in infectious disease. Director of Infection Control and Medical Response at the National Emerging Infectious Disease Lab at BU. See her GoFundMe page, "Support Sierra Leonean Ebola Workers," here. (@BhadeliaMD)
Dr. Yusupha Dibba, Medical Director at Wellbody Alliance, an NGO in Sierra Leone that provides healthcare in the Kono district and treated patients during the Ebola outbreak. (@YusufDibba)
From Tom's Reading List
Washington Post: 'Needless suffering and death, social and economic havoc': Ebola report cites egregious failure by countries, WHO — "A panel of global experts has issued a strong rebuke against the World Health Organization, accusing it of numerous failures in both technical judgment and leadership in its response to the Ebola outbreak, a mistake that the panel said led to 'thousands' of deaths that could have been prevented."
The Lancet: Will Ebola change the game? Ten essential reforms before the next pandemic. — "The West African ebola epidemic that began in 2013 exposed deep inadequacies in the national and international institutions responsible for protecting the public from the far-reaching human, social economic and political consequences of infectious disease outbreaks."
New York Times: Guinea, Last Nation With Ebola, May Soon Be Declared Free of Virus — "The worst Ebola outbreak in history took a big step toward ending on in early November when Guinea, the only nation where the virus had been lingering, began its official countdown to being declared free of the disease. The countdown began after a 3-week-old girl, Nubia Soumah, the last known patient in active treatment in the world, tested negative for the virus twice in a row."
This program aired on December 21, 2015.