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Tuesday, 21 October 2014

All across the country and, indeed, all around the world, people are in a panic about the Ebola virus.  That's particularly true here in the United States, since a man visiting our country from Liberia, (ground zero for the virus), was diagnosed with the illness recently in Dallas, Texas.  Sadly, the hospital responsible for the care of this patient did not take all of the necessary precautions to ensure the disease did not spread.  And now two of that hospital's nurses have been stricken with the disease.  Thankfully, at this writing, they're both getting expert care and are in good or staple condition.  Let's do keep them both in our prayers.
A state of panic is gripping our nation over the Ebola virus.
In the meantime, a state of panic seems to inded be gripping our nation.  Yes, we should all be concerned but this state of panic we're witnessing is not helping the situation at all.  Worth noting is that including the man who brought the disease with him on that airliner, as of today, THREE people in the United States have been diagnosed with the Ebola virus.  But it's so important to keep things in perspective.  That's THREE PEOPLE out of a nation with a population of roughly 300,000,000.
Still, I can understand the fear.  Ebola is a horrible disease and begins with the onset of flulike symptoms, including fever, weakness, muscle pain, headache and sore throat, followed by vomiting, diarrhea, rash, impaired kidney & liver function and internal bleeding.  In humans, Ebola is spread through direct contact with the blood or other body fluids of a symptomatic infected person.  That means the person infected has to be exhibiting these symptoms outright for them to be contagious.  And remember, it takes fairly intimate contact to pick up the disease.
Dr. William Schaffner, a Vanderbilt University professor and expert on infectious diseases tells us that people should not be so alarmed about the Ebola virus.  He insists the disease is not easily contracted.  According to Dr. Schaffner, it's not transmitted the same way as influenza, (the flu).  Again, it takes very close and direct contact with an infected person's body fluids.  There is no respiratory transmission of this virus person to person.
I have confidence in the brilliant medical minds here in America that we will beat this disease.
I know the Centers for Disease Control has taken a lot of criticism over the past few weeks about how they've handled this health dilemma.  I call it a dilemma because it's not yet a crisis in this country and I honestly don't think it will become one.  We're on a learning curve right now and the more we learn about the disease, the better we'll be able to fight it.   In the meantime, I have utmost confidence in the brilliant medical minds here in America that we will beat this disease and keep it from taking a stranglehold on our country.  But that means we'll have to beat Ebola worldwide, begining with those counties in Africa who aren't nearly as blessed with the kind of medical resources we have.
In the meantime, do exercise caution but please, don't panic.  Truth is, panic is spreading in this country a million times faster than the Ebola virus.  The vast majority of us have a much greater risk of picking up a nasty flu virus this season and did you know?  Tens of thousands of Americans die each year from the flu and its complications.  So like I said before, keep things in perspective and don't let your fears get the best of you!