Red Alert — Ebola is Back
The Ebola virus causes an acute, serious illness which is often fatal if untreated. Ebola virus disease (EVD) first appeared in 1976 in 2 simultaneous outbreaks, one in Nzara, Sudan, and the other in Yambuku, Democratic Republic of Congo. The latter occurred in a village near the Ebola River, from which the disease takes its name. The current outbreak in West Africa, (first cases notified in March 2014), is the largest and most complex Ebola outbreak since the Ebola virus was first discovered in 1976. There have been more cases and deaths in this outbreak than all others combined.
It has also spread between countries starting in Guinea then spreading across land borders to Sierra Leone and Liberia, by air (1 traveller) to Nigeria and USA (1 traveller), and by land to Senegal (1 traveller) and Mali (2 travellers). The most severely affected countries, Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, have very weak health systems, lack human and infrastructural resources, and have only recently emerged from long periods of conflict and instability. On August 8, the WHO Director-General declared the West Africa outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern under the International Health Regulations (2005). The virus family Filoviridae includes three genera: Cuevavirus, Marburgvirus, and Ebolavirus. There are five species that have been identified: Zaire, Bundibugyo, Sudan, Reston and Taï Forest. The first three, Bundibugyo ebolavirus, Zaire ebolavirus, and Sudan ebolavirus have been associated with large outbreaks in Africa. The virus causing the 2014 West African outbreak belongs to the Zaire species.
A British nurse who was successfully treated in January after contracting Ebola in Sierra Leone is now “critically ill” due to a resurgence of the virus, the hospital treating her said on Wednesday.VIDEOGRAPHIC
Ebola nurse Pauline Cafferkey ‘critically ill’ – BBC News
Scottish nurse Pauline Cafferkey, who is being treated for complications from Ebola, is now “critically ill”, doctors have said.
Ms Cafferkey, 39, was readmitted to a specialist isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital in London last week. The hospital said in a statement that her condition had deteriorated. Ms Cafferkey contracted Ebola while working at a treatment centre in Sierra Leone last year.
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