The Ebola Virus Outbreak in West Africa
By: Danielle Taylor
For the first time in recorded history, there is a massive outbreak of the Ebola virus in the West African countries of Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone. There have been 3,069 cases suspected or confirmed, and 1,552 of those have ended in death.
Ebola is a disease that is transmitted through contact, usually from non-domesticated animals to human beings in one fashion or another. An article on USA Today’s website states that it is “unknown what the natural host for Ebola is, but it’s believed to be the fruit bat.” Many are calling for the quarantine or destruction of infected animals to attempt to control the outbreak.
Since there is no vaccine for the virus, it would be best for those showing the initial symptoms of the virus (e.g. fever, intense weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat) should avoid any and all contact with other human beings or animals and immediately report to a health facility before symptoms become worse and prove fatal.
But how does this relate to other issues going on in the world? As immigration is a major problem in the US right now, there is a chance that someone traveling from West Africa to the United States could come into contact with thousands of people in just a few seconds by entering the airport. Ebola could become a serious problem should it be spread from West Africa to any country without vaccinations available–which also could be a problem without proper financial support in the countries being affected.
Although there are no armaments involved, the Ebola virus is waging a war of its own on the human population of West Africa. This battle, however, has no foreseeable end to it until a vaccine can be created or until the virus runs its course on the battlefield of the human immune system.
Lee, Jolie. “Ebola Virus: What You Need to Know about the Deadly Outbreak.” USA Today. Gannett, 21 Aug. 2014. 03 Sept. 2014.