During the last couple of months, the Africa-origined disease has managed to escape the continent, resulting in the first cases of Ebola outside the African region. Lack of preparation facing this outbreak has caused panic to spread worldwide. The high levels of contagiousness combined with the life threatening symptoms make this the topic to be aware of. Ebola receives its name after the Ebola River located in Zaire, Africa. It was around this region that the first outbreak of the disease occurred. 300 people were infected, approximately.
Due to the poor health system and lack of help and support from other, more developed countries, the first outbreak was the just the beginning of what is now, an international problem. The disease rapidly spread to the neighbouring countries of West Africa, causing the death of not hundreds, but thousands of people through the years. The recent appearance of cases of this disease outside Africa, combined with the excessive media coverage has caused the worldwide population to enter a state of panic. Interestingly, the focus has been to show the dangers of Ebola, instead of
showing people how to take preventive measures in order to reduce the risk of infection. The inability of health care facilities to stop the slow but steady spread of the disease is making people feel like no one is safe. The symptoms are greatly feared. Ebola causes a slow, painful death in its victims. Some symptoms include fever higher than 38,6 degrees Celsius, severe headaches, muscle pain, vomiting and internal bleeding.
Nonetheless, the disease is constantly confused with others, such as malaria, despite it having very clear symptoms. Curiously, symptoms seem to appear a week or two after being infected by the virus. This increases the risk of contagion greatly due to the unawareness of the people suffering from the disease. Early diagnosis and isolation is key to bringing the spread of Ebola to a stop. Recently, the disease has reached a few countries outside of Africa. Some are Russia, The United States, The Philippines, Norway, England and Spain, where there is already 1 fatal victim. One of the most covered cases is the Spanish nurse.
The inexistence of a clear procedure to follow when treating someone who is infected caused her to be the second case of Ebola in Spain. Most hospitals around the world have not got the materials needed to treat the disease or protect the people working there. Doctors and nurses need to secure their own safety in order to be able to treat patients correctly. The nurse’s case is proof of that not taking place and the endangerment of those who can help. Ebola has taken thousands of lives and people still have not been able to stop it.
This has direct relation to the lack of preparation, procedures to follow and cooperation between countries. However, if simple preventive actions are implemented on the population to be followed on a daily basis, it can be of great help. The world needs to be informed in order to stop accidental casualties and in order to bring this outbreak to a complete stop. Countries and continents depend on one another and it is therefore fundamental for help to be given to countries in need. Mutual cooperation is key in order to beat this crisis.