Ebola is a rare and lethal disease that causes hemorrhagic fevers marked by severe bleeding, organ failure, and sometimes death.
Ebola first emerged in 1976 in the African states of Sudan and Zaire. In the past twenty years, there have been moments when the potential for an Ebola outbreak in America was high, but it was not until now that the virus has really begun to make an impact in the States.
Symptoms begin with classic flu-like symptoms, but soon follow with excessive vomiting and internal and external bleeding occurs. The fatality rate is 71%, and survivors of the disease often face other health problems afterwards.
Ever since Ebola was reported to be prominent in the United States, constant media coverage and exaggeration caused by hysteria has arisen. People across the country that hear of any possible Ebola case in their area begin to panic. However, the spread of Ebola between humans only occurs from direct contact with the blood or bodily fluids of an infected person.
Despite the misconceptions, Ebola is not airborne, and cannot be spread through water or food in general. All the same, the 2014 Ebola epidemic is the largest in history, affecting many nations in West Africa and being transmitted to other countries such as Spain and the US.
Scientists and researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta and at the World Health Organization (WHO) are working hard and working quickly to report accurate procedures and information about Ebola to the public and to ensure that panic does not lead to tragic mistakes.
Throughout the last few weeks, several people unknowingly traveled to America after they had contracted Ebola from West African states.
One of the major cases was a man who traveled to Texas and developed symptoms a few days after entering the US. Although he died, some healthcare workers who had made contact with him caught the disease. Fortunately, they made a quick recovery.
A New York City physician named Craig Spencer also returned from a trip for Doctors without Borders, a humanitarian organization, from Guinea and developed Ebola soon afterwards. He is now in stable condition.
There has been a lot of criticism directed towards the hospitals that have housed Ebola patients in America, but it is clear that we are far more prepared for this outbreak than the primary sources in Africa.
While the fatality rate in Africa is about 71%, it is as low as 30% in America. The healthcare system in the States is much more advanced and patients have access to experimental treatment and therapies that patients in Africa do not have.
Officials at the CDC and hospitals all across the nation are working harder than ever to stem the outbreak and send help to Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone, the most affected areas of Africa. Slowly but surely, people are working to neutralize the epidemic known as Ebola.