Mark Caserta: Should we be concerned about Ebola outbreak

23 Oct

Or does “O” have it under control?

ebola 1

Oct. 23, 2014 @ 06:57 AM

The deadly Ebola virus is now in the United States. So how concerned should we be?

In September, the Obama administration told Americans we had little to fear about an Ebola outbreak in the U.S., like the one occurring in certain West African countries.

“The CDC has concluded that there is no significant risk in the United States from the current Ebola outbreak,” said White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest.

“And while it is unlikely that the disease would spread if the virus were detected in the United States, the CDC is taking action to alert health care workers in the U.S. and remind them how to isolate and test suspected patients while following strict infection control procedures.” Ebola virus disease is a rare and deadly affliction caused by infection with one of the Ebola virus strains. It’s spread through the transmission of bodily fluids or contaminated surfaces and causes an acute, serious illness which can be fatal if untreated. There are currently no licensed vaccines. The menacing nature of the virus has sparked fear that it could spread from West Africa to other regions or continents.

“This epidemic is without precedent,” said Bart Janssens, director of operations for Medecins Sans Frontieres. “It’s absolutely not under control, and the situation keeps worsening … There are many places where people are infected but we don’t know about it.” CNN recently reported the current Ebola outbreak is “running much faster” than the international response to it, according to the co-discoverer of the virus.

“This is the first Ebola epidemic where entire nations are involved, where big cities are affected,” Peter Piot, a microbiologist and former undersecretary general of the United Nations, said. “And I continue to be worried that the response to the epidemic is really running behind the virus.” Three weeks ago, Barack Obama took to the podium along with CDC Director, Dr.

Tom Frieden, to “calm” the nation regarding the Ebola outbreak.

“First and foremost, I want the American people to know that our experts, here at the CDC and across our government, agree that the chances of an Ebola outbreak here in the United States are extremely low,” Obama said. “In the unlikely event that someone with Ebola does reach our shores, we’ve taken new measures so that we’re prepared here at home.” But despite the president’s “reassurance,” recent events make one question just how prepared we truly are for an Ebola outbreak.

As of last Friday, eight confirmed cases of Ebola have now been or are being treated in the United States while 125 other people are being monitored or are in some form of quarantine, according to the CDC.

So, how concerned should Americans be about a potentia Ebola outbreak in the U.S.?

The same president who told us there wasn’t a “smidgen” of corruption in the IRS, “you can keep your health care plan if you like it” and the Benghazi attack was the result of an anti-Muslim video is now telling us not to worry about Ebola. You tell me.

Mark Caserta is a conserva tive blogger, a Cabell County resident and a regular contributor to The Herald-Dispatch editorial page.

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