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Dr. Margaret Chan, the W.H.O. director general, was speaking as she met with the leaders of the three most affected countries — Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone — in Conakry, the Guinean capital, for the introduction of a $100 million plan to deploy hundreds more medical professionals in support of overstretched regional and international health workers.
“This meeting must mark a turning point in the outbreak response,” Dr. Chan said, according to a W.H.O. transcript of her remarks. “If the situation continues to deteriorate, the consequences can be catastrophic in terms of lost lives but also severe socioeconomic disruption and a high risk of spread to other countries.”
She said the outbreak was “caused by the most lethal strain in the family of Ebola viruses.”
First, this outbreak is moving faster than our efforts to control it. If the situation continues to deteriorate, the consequences can be catastrophic in terms of lost lives but also severe socioeconomic disruption and a high risk of spread to other countries. As I said before, this meeting must mark a turning point in the outbreak response.
In addition, the outbreak is affecting a large number of doctors, nurses, and other health care workers, one of the most essential resources for containing an outbreak. To date, more than 60 health care workers have lost their lives in helping others. Some international staff are infected. These tragic infections and deaths significantly erode response capacity.
Second, the situation in West Africa is of international concern and must receive urgent priority for decisive action at national and international levels. Experiences in Africa over nearly four decades tell us clearly that, when well managed, an Ebola outbreak can be stopped.
This is not an airborne virus. Transmission requires close contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person, also after death. Apart from this specific situation, the general public is not at high risk of infection by the Ebola virus.
At the same time, it would be extremely unwise for national authorities and the international community to allow an Ebola virus to circulate widely and over a long period of time in human populations.
Constant mutation and adaptation are the survival mechanisms of viruses and other microbes. We must not give this virus opportunities to deliver more surprises.
Third, this is not just a medical or public health problem. It is a social problem. Deep-seated beliefs and cultural practices are a significant cause of further spread and a significant barrier to rapid and effective containment. This social dimension must also be addressed as an integral part of the overall response.
Fourth, in some areas, chains of transmission have moved underground. They are invisible. They are not being reported. Because of the high fatality rate, many people in affected areas associate isolation wards with a sure death sentence, and prefer to care for loved ones in homes or seek assistance from traditional healers.
originally posted by: WanDash
a reply to: loam
One vial - Two vials - Three?
But in all the huh-bub...we lose track of the ebola-surviving-boy that donated a unit of blood to save the life of the doctor that saved his own...
So - did Brantley get the boy's blood...AND the serum?
Or...just the serum?
If just the serum... Where'd the story about the survivor-turn-savior come from?
originally posted by: Druid42
a reply to: Staroth
Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I think it was 4 days to culture for an Ebola Positive. No way you can tell immediately.
originally posted by: marg6043
a reply to: loam
Is all planned, the bringing of ebola into the nation, they already have a serum and a vaccine to be tested, but they are not telling how much of it is available in case a pandemic develop within the next few months, they want panic to spread into the population, the end result is enough panicked and scare people to scream for a vaccine, poor countries where the ebola sprouted are not money making pit for big pharma, they need affluent countries like the US and UK to reap benefits.
BTW all together the investment on the pharmas working with ebola vaccine and serum is 148 millions between DOD and monspanto.
Or another perspective is that the development of this serum has been a complex process going on for years and what we hear from the media is usually a simplified version of events. I'm not aware of any vaccine being developed either, it seems just to be the 'serum' that is given after symptoms develop.
This article is an interesting read, it's about the teams the CDC send to Ebola outbreaks to try and figure out how it is spread from the fruit bats to the human population. It also sheds light on the 'serum' and how it has been tested, It's from 2012.
The drug development process takes an average of 15 years and costs billions of dollars. Pharmaceutical companies are reluctant to expend those resources to combat a virus that has killed about 1,080 people in 30 years or so. So far, nearly all Ebola vaccine research has been funded by the U.S. government to combat potential bioterrorist attacks. The Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases in Fort Detrick, Maryland, recently tested an experimental vaccine made from virus-like particles on guinea pigs and monkeys, and reported promising results. Several biodefense contractors have initiated small-scale safety trials with human volunteers, who are not exposed to the Ebola virus.
Read more: www.smithsonianmag.com...
I think the key part here is how it's been tested on pigs monkeys and that 'several' contractors have done small scale trials with humans who did not have Ebola. Given the small numbers of people who get Ebola and the difficulties of working in the conditions necessary for a scientific study it's no wonder the 2 US citizens were brought back to the US to be the first human guinea pigs.
It seems that the serum was arranged privately through the company that manufactured it and the patients familes. Again it is quite obvious a company would jump at the chance to test a potential cure for almost no financial outlay, when usually it takes a great deal of money.
Details of how ZMapp was administered to the patients in Liberia—and who authorized its use—remained sketchy Tuesday. Bruce Johnson, president of SIM USA, the Charlotte, N.C.-based charity with which Ms. Writebol, 59, and her husband, David, went to Africa, said at a news conference Tuesday that the decision to use the drug was left to the patients, their families and their doctors.
Kentucky BioProcessing is working with Mapp and government agencies to increase production of ZMapp, he said. In addition, the company complied with a request from Emory University, at whose hospital the two patients are being treated, and Samaritan's Purse to provide a limited amount of ZMapp to Emory, said Mr. Howard. He declined to say how much was provided. An Emory spokeswoman wouldn't confirm the request.
So we have anonymous sources 'familar with the treatment' in articles specifying actual numbers of vials available and people take that as gospel, or we have properly sourced quotes of people who have some involvement with the development of the treatment giving different info. As we all know when a journalist or report wants to use information that can't be verified they will use an anonymous source and bung it into an article anyway.
I think it's more likely the 'anonymous sources' are interpretations of incomplete bits of information and the info.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID), is encouraged by the antibody treatment. "Obviously there are plans and enthusiasm to expand this," Fauci told me. "The limiting factor is the extraordinary paucity of treatment regimens."
Text NIAID did some of the original research that led to the development, but this is owned by Mapp Biopharmaceuticals. "They are certainly trying to scale up," Fauci said, "but I've heard that their capability is such that it's going to be months before they have a substantial number of doses, and even then they're going to be limited.
Someone IS telling you how much is available and it's not very much because it has been developed by contractors who haven't had the budget to test it ethically on humans.
So trying to induce panic and hiding vaccines or just not a financially viable option?
originally posted by: kosmicjack
The "hero" narrative played an important parted in limiting the public outcry and push back about flying him back to the states.
In other words, shaming people who were questioning the prudence of the decision.