Ebola Virus Reaches New York City

Ebola Virus is brought to New York City by a Doctor returning from West Africa. We still have a lot to learn about Ebola. Perhaps everyone returning from West Africa needs to be quarantined, especially health workers.  Then there are the thousands of US military  personnel being sent  to Africa, Have we really thought this through? How would their return be handled?

Source: Doctors Without Borders physician in NYC tests positive for Ebola

By Ray Sanchez and Shimon Prokupecz, CNN

A Doctors Without Borders physician who recently returned to New York from West Africa has tested positive for the Ebola virus, a law enforcement official briefed on the matter told CNN.

The doctor, identified as Craig Spencer, 33, came back from West Africa about 10 days ago, and developed a fever, nausea, pain and fatigue Wednesday night.

The 33-year-old physician, employed at New York’s Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, has been in isolation at Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan since Thursday morning, the official said.

At a news conference Thursday, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio sought to allay public concerns about the spread of the deadly virus, saying that “careful protocols were followed every step of the way” in the city’s handling of the case. The hospitalized doctor has “worked closely” with health officials, the mayor said.

Craig Spencer
Craig Spencer, Ebola Infected Doctor
Spencer posted this image to Facebook on September 18 from Brussells, saying “Off to Guinea with Doctors Without Borders (MSF). Please support organizations that are sending support or personnel to West Africa, and help combat one of the worst public health and humanitarian disasters in recent history.

The doctor exhibited symptoms of the Ebola virus for “a very brief period of time” and had direct contact with “very few people” in New York, de Blasio told reporters.

On his Facebook page, Spencer posted a photo of himself in protective gear. The page indicates he went to Guinea around September 18 and later to Brussels in mid October.

“Off to Guinea with Doctors Without Borders (MSF)” he wrote. “Please support organizations that are sending support or personnel to West Africa, and help combat one of the worst public health and humanitarian disasters in recent history.”

In a statement, Columbia Presbyterian Hospital said the doctor was “a dedicated humanitarian” who went to “an area of medical crisis to help a desperately underserved population.”

Dr. Craig Spencer
photo of Dr. Craig Spencer, being treated in NY for Ebola

“He is a committed and responsible physician who always puts his patients first,” the hospital statement said. “He has not been to work at our hospital and has not seen any patients at our hospital since his return from overseas.”

The CDC had people packing up to go to New York on Thursday, and a specimen from the physician was to be sent to Atlanta for testing, an official familiar with the situation told CNN’s Elizabeth Cohen.

Investigators took the case seriously from the outset because it appeared the doctor didn’t quarantine himself following his return, the law enforcement official said. The doctor traveled to Brooklyn and then back to Manhattan on Wednesday night, the official said.

In a statement Thursday, Doctors Without Borders confirmed that the physician recently returned from West Africa and was “engaged in regular health monitoring.” The doctor contacted Doctors Without Borders Thursday to report a fever, the statement said.

The law enforcement official said the doctor was out in public. Authorities also quarantined his girlfriend, with whom he was spending time since his return from Africa.

The doctor began feeling sluggish a couple of days ago, but it wasn’t until Thursday, when he developed 103-degree fever, that he contacted Doctors Without Borders, authorities said.

The case came to light after the New York Fire Department received a call shortly before noon Thursday about a sick person in Manhattan. The patient was taken to Bellevue.

Read More: Dr. Craig Spencer

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Ebola Anxiety: For Americans Bigger Threat Than the Virus

The Ebola virus causes a scary disease. But, really the chance of an American catching Ebola while in the United States is small. I don’t have the numbers to back me up,but I expect your chances of getting struck by lightening or bitten by a shark are much greater than coming down with Ebola. Without a doubt your chances of being hurt or killed in a auto accident are far greater.

Still, Ebola anxiety is widespread. Perhaps the following article will help to put things in perspective.

Ebola Anxiety: A Bigger Threat Now Than the Virus Itself

By Amy Norton
HealthDay Reporter

Headlines remain riveted on the three Ebola cases in Dallas. But, mental health specialists say overblown fear is a much bigger health threat to Americans.

Anxious woman
Anxious woman

President Barack Obama on Friday appointed an Ebola “czar” to oversee the U.S. response to the virus, which has infected two Dallas nurses who cared for a Liberian man who died of Ebola this month at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital.

But the U.S. cases are miniscule in the context of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa that’s concentrated in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone and has so far killed more than 4,500 people, according to the World Health Organization.

Still, U.S. mental health experts say the combination of a deadly infection, uncertainty about how the Dallas nurses contracted it and constant media coverage could set the stage for widespread public anxiety.

Americans aren’t in panic mode yet, said James Halpern, director of the Institute for Disaster Mental Health at the State University of New York at New Paltz.

However, flu season is starting up, and its common symptoms — fever, headache and muscle pain — could be misinterpreted if people have Ebola on their minds.

“If we have a bad flu season, that could create a considerable emotional contagion,” Halpern said.

“It’s not only the virus that’s contagious,” he added.

In general, Halpern said, people have a hard time accurately assessing personal risk, and emotional reaction can override rational calculations. “We’re more afraid of snakes than cigarettes,” he noted.

And since most people, understandably, have limited knowledge of infectious diseases, they could be particularly susceptible to believing misinformation about disease outbreaks, said George Kapalka, a professor of psychological counseling at Monmouth University in West Long Beach, N.J.

Halpern agreed. With any worrisome event, he pointed out, “there’s going to be a lot of misinformation and rumors going around.” But faced with something as scary and unfamiliar as Ebola, people could have a particularly tough time separating reality from rumor, he said.

And then there’s the media coverage. “I think there’s been a gross overreaction on the part of the media,” said Gerard Jacobs, director of the University of South Dakota’s Disaster Mental Health Institute.

“The flu is a much greater threat to the American public than Ebola is,” Jacobs said.

He suggested that if you are feeling anxious about Ebola, go to a reliable source for information, such as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Their focus is the health of the American public,” Jacobs said. “They’re scientists, not politicians.”

Added Halpern: “Accurate information can be a good antidote to anxiety.”

But once you find out some Ebola facts, find something else to do. It’s not wise, Halpern said, to watch 24-hour news coverage of the outbreak, or devote hours of online time to it — including social media sites, where rumors can run rampant.

That could be especially important advice for people already prone to anxiety, according to Kapalka. “Those individuals can have a more intense fear response to what they’re hearing,” he said. “It would be sensible for them to self-impose some limits on their media exposure.”

According to the CDC, Ebola is spread through direct contact with the virus. “Direct contact” means that an infected person’s bodily fluids — such as blood, saliva or vomit — have touched someone else’s eyes, nose, mouth or broken skin.

Coughing and sneezing aren’t common symptoms of Ebola, but the CDC says it’s possible the virus could be transmitted if an infected person’s saliva or mucus got into someone else’s eyes, mouth or nose.

The bottom line, the CDC and other experts stress, is that you would need to be very close to someone with Ebola symptoms to become infected.

Kapalka suggested that, armed with that knowledge, people do a “reality check.” That is, what are the chances you are going to be in close contact with someone likely to have Ebola?

Then, Kapalka said, “You might be able to tell yourself, my personal risk is so low, living in fear is not worth it.”

Read More: Ebola Anxiety

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Ebola : 2014 Outbreak Explained by Video

This video on the 2014 Ebola outbreak is a bit outdated as the disease continues to rapidly spread in West Africa.

Scientists working in a laboratory
Scientists working in a laboratory

Ebola experts all agree on one thing. The Ebola virus outbreak must be fought and contained in West Africa. The disease spreading to heavily populated cities around the world, largely through air travel, would be a nightmare.

Ebola virus is a favorite search over most search engines today. At our website, we tried to gather the best pieces of information for you. In case you liked the article above, we would recommend you to browse through our article gallery for more valuable take-away on the subject matter. Please remember the articles we present are collated from mainstream websites. Hopefully MSM is reporting accurate information as known today.

The Colder War Has Begun… Vladimir Putin is Winning!

Vladimir Putin is stripping America of its superpower status. And he’s not using bombs or tanks to do it! Putin is an extremely clever guy who had a remarkable rise to power. He should never be underestimated. It’s thought by some that Putin is a chess master while President Obama is still working on checkers. What do you think?

Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin, Russian President

 Putin is orchestrating an ingenious yet devastating, decades-long plan to control the global energy trade—the largest source of demand for the dollar and bedrock of American might and prosperity.

Should Putin win, it could nuke the US economy and cost the average American dearly. The stakes have never been higher, and we’ve never been more vulnerable.

This epic struggle that will define the decade and century to come is detailed in the eye-opening new book, The Colder War.

Read More: The Colder War

Dr. Michael Osterholm On Ebola Virus. “There’s a Lot We Don’t Know”

Dr. Osterholm is the head of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota. He is a prominent public health scientist and a nationally recognized Biosecurity expert. In his talk on CSPAN he cautions officials about making misleading statements about the Ebola virus. According  to Dr. Osterholm there is a lot about this strain of Ebola that researchers don’t understand.

This outbreak is different. The Doctor encourages officials to tell the public the truth.

Starting about 19 minutes in Dr. Osterholm makes some statements  about the airborne issue.

Did you like reading our collection on Ebola virus? We update new information on Ebola virus weekly. We would like to see you back on our website to enjoy more valuable reading. There is a lot we still have to cover on this fast moving story.

Doctors Without Borders at Breaking Point in Ebola Fight

The front line doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers, are the real heroes in the fight against Ebola. It takes real bravery and dedication to go to the dangerous work day after day. I salute them all.

I hope our CDC is in close contact with DWB. In Africa, they have led the Ebola fight for years. Africa is the place this disease must be stopped. The international response must be robust. The US is now leading the way and must continue to show leadership. We need to aid Doctors Without Borders  and they need to aid us. The disease can be stopped, but will take a massive effort.

doctors and nurses
Doctors and Nurses Are Heros

By Makiko Kitamura and Naomi Kresge Oct 19, 2014 Bloomberg.

At 3:30 a.m. in the world’s biggest Ebola treatment center, Daniel Lucey found the outbreak reduced to its essentials: patients lying on mattresses on the floor and vomiting in the dark, visible only by the wavering flashlight beam of a single volunteer doctor.

“I don’t see a light at the end of the tunnel,” said Lucey, a physician and professor from Georgetown University who is halfway through a five-week tour in Liberia with Medecins Sans Frontieres, the medical charity known in English as Doctors Without Borders. “The epidemic is still getting worse,” he said by phone between shifts.

That’s an increasingly urgent challenge for MSF and the global health community. As fear spreads in the U.S. over transmission of the virus to two nurses in a modern Dallas hospital, the main fight against the outbreak is still being waged by volunteers like Lucey half a world away.MSF has been the first — and often only — line of defense against Ebola in West Africa. The group raised the alarm on March 31, months ahead of the World Health Organization. Now, after treating almost a third of the roughly 9,000 confirmed Ebola cases in Africa — and faced with a WHO warning of perhaps 10,000 new infections a week by December — MSF is reaching its limits.

Photographer: John Moore/Getty Images
A doctor outside the JFK Ebola treatment center speaks to journalists on Oct. 13, 2014… Read More
“They are at the breaking point,” said Vinh-Kim Nguyen, a professor at the School of Public Health at the University of Montreal who has volunteered for a West African tour with MSF in a few weeks. MSF has already seen 21 workers infected and 12 people die, and “there’s a sense that there’s a major wave of infections that’s about to wash everything away,” Nguyen said.

Biafra War

The story of how a relatively small, decentralized group like MSF came to lead the response to the world’s biggest outbreak of Ebola began 43 years ago in Paris. Alarmed by war and famine in the Nigerian secessionist state of Biafra, 13 doctors and journalists created an emergency medical response organization that could work around the world.

Read More: Doctors Without Borders

The Ebola virus is a favorite search over most search engines today. At our website, we tried to gather the best pieces of information for you. In case you liked the article above, we would recommend you to browse through our article gallery for more valuable take-away on the subject matter. Please remember the articles we present are collated from mainstream websites. Hopefully MSM is reporting accurate information as known today.

Russell Brand Says Don’t Vote. What’s His Beef?

Russell Brand set off a fire storm when in an interview with Newsnight host editor Jeremy Paxman he encouraged the British electorate not to vote. Brand endorsed a system based on the ‘massive redistribution of wealth’ to replace the status quo.

What do you think? Does his take on the British political system apply to America? Do we also have a massive problem with wealth distribution? Or is Russell Brand full of it?

Russell Brand
Russell Brand, Comedian and Activist.

From Wikipedia:

Russell Edward Brand[7] (born 4 June 1975)[8] is an English comedian, actor, radio host, author, and activist.

In 2004, Brand achieved notoriety as the host of Big Brother’s Big Mouth, a Big Brother spin-off. In 2007, he had his first major film role in St Trinian’s. In 2008, he had a major role in Forgetting Sarah Marshall; the film led to him starring in the spinoff Get Him to the Greek in 2010. He also worked as a voice actor in the animated films Despicable Me in 2010, Hop in 2011, and Despicable Me 2 in 2013. He played the title character of the 2011 remake Arthur.

Brand has received significant media coverage for controversies such as his dismissal from MTV, his behaviour as a presenter at various award ceremonies, and his drug use. In 2008, he resigned from the BBC following prank calls he made to actor Andrew Sachs on The Russell Brand Show. He has incorporated his drug use, alcoholism, and promiscuity into his comedic material.

Since guest editing an edition of the New Statesman, a British weekly magazine, Brand has become increasingly active politically. This includes a widely publicised interview with Newsnight host editor Jeremy Paxman, in which he encouraged the British electorate not to vote and endorsed a system based on the ‘massive redistribution of wealth’ to replace the status quo.

Ebola Disease Units Top Notch, But Short on Beds

The US has four top notch infectious disease units that are well suited for safely treating Ebola patients. The problem is each facility can only treat a few patients at one time.

The CDC has stepped up its protocol guidelines. Hospitals across the nation are scrambling to upgrade procedures for treating Ebola patients. Hopefully, with lessons learned, the Ebola disease will be contained. After the mishaps in Dallas everyone realizes the seriousness of treating Ebola. In treating the Ebola disease, there is no room for mistakes.

Ebola Disease Units Boast High-Level Tools, Few Rooms.

By Robert Langreth and Cynthia Koons Oct 17, 2014

The state-of-the-art infectious disease centers now treating Ebola patients in the U.S. have world-class doctors and nurses with years of training, hot pressure chambers that can sterilize more than a ton of contaminated waste, and a record of success handling some of the world’s most demonic pestilence.

Ebola disease
Ebola Lab Worker

What they don’t have is a lot of room for patients.

Only four hospitals in the country have high-level containment units specially designed for treating exotic infectious diseases such as Ebola, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Each has the capacity to treat only a handful of Ebola patients at once.

“If there are any more mishaps we’re going to need more beds,” said Robert Glatter, an emergency room doctor at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York. “We need to significantly increase” the number of sophisticated containment units.

The debacle at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, where two health workers were infected with Ebola while treating Thomas Eric Duncan before he died, exposed the lack of preparedness for treating Ebola at many hospitals. While various major hospitals are now gearing up to treat Ebola, for now patients are being treated at just these handful of centers.

Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, which is treating Amber Vinson, the second Dallas health-care worker to be infected by Ebola, has capacity for three patients in its biocontainment unit, which was created in 2002, said Holly Korschun, an Emory spokeswoman, in an e-mail.

Over the years, its workers “were trained in the use of personal protective equipment like full-body suits, and they ran drills for a dozen different scenarios,” she said.

The National Institutes of Health Clinical Center, which is treating Nina Pham, the first Dallas health-care worker to be infected with Ebola, has capacity to take two patients, an NIH official told Congress on Thursday. The unit, in Bethesda, Maryland, is designed to provide high-level isolation capabilities, the NIH said in a statement.

The biocontainment facility at the Nebraska Medical Center, which is treating NBC cameraman Ashoka Mukpo, would most likely be able to handle two to three patients at a time, depending on the severity of the cases, said Christopher Kratochvil, associate vice-chancellor for clinical research at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, in a telephone interview.

Montana Facility

A fourth biocontainment facility in Montana, designed to treat workers from the NIH’s Rocky Mountain Laboratories in cases of accidental infection, has three patient rooms, according to a 2010 article in Emerging Infectious Diseases.

The high-level containment units weren’t necessarily designed with Ebola in mind, said Rick Davey, deputy clinical director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases division of clinical research, on a conference call with reporters. Instead, they were developed to safely treat workers from various national facilities who became infected with pathogens in accidents, he said. Among other features, the units have state-of-the-art air handling capabilities so microbes can’t get out.

“The staff training and drilling and re-training and re-drilling that all of these units have undertaken over a process of years has prepared them thoroughly for this current outbreak,” Davey said.

Ebola is challenging to treat safely because patients release large amounts of vomit, diarrhea or blood as the disease becomes more advanced, and the fluids can contain large amounts of infectious virus. Patients can lose as much as 5 to 10 liters of bodily fluids a day, according to a presentation by an Emory University infectious disease specialist, Bruce Ribner, at a medical conference in early October.

350 Boxes

At Emory, in just a three-week period after its first Ebola patient arrived, the hospital had to sterilize 350 boxes of medical waste weighing more than 3,000 pounds using a device called an autoclave, according to a webcast of Ribner’s presentation at idweek.org.

They filled several trailers sent off for incineration, according to the presentation.

Dealing with fluids “is a huge problem,” in treating Ebola patients, according to Sean Kaufman, a biosafety expert who was involved in infection control when the first two Ebola patients were treated at Emory in August. “The challenge of cleaning up large spills is substantial,” he said.

Kaufman has since left Emory and is now training doctors in Liberia.

‘Engineered Properly’

Emory “did a lot of things right,” Kaufman said. “They had a beautiful facility that was engineered properly. They had the best personal protective equipment. They had outstanding standard operating procedures. And they had great administrative control.”

For example, Emory used full-body suits and head gear, going beyond the minimum recommendations of the Atlanta-based CDC at the time, because nurses were more comfortable in them, according to Kaufman.

It also was important to have someone not involved in care watching over the caregivers to make sure they don’t inadvertently slip up and infect themselves, Kaufman said. At Emory, he said, “I sat in there with them for 15 hours a day for close to two weeks to make sure they did what they were supposed to do.”

The first two Ebola patients Emory treated — aid worker Nancy Writebol and doctor Kent Brantly — recovered and were released. A third patient who arrived at Emory on September 9 is recovering and expects to be released soon, according to a statement from the patient released by Emory on October 15.

Prior Training

The biocontainment facility at the Nebraska Medical Center, which successfully treated doctor Rick Sacra, has 40 employees from a variety of backgrounds. They include surgical nurses, respiratory therapists, nursing assistants and infectious disease doctors.

Five to seven staff members work on the unit at any one time treating a given Ebola patient, said Kratochvil, associate vice-chancellor for clinical research at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

“To be able to perform at this level will really be based on the prior training of the hospital,” Kratochvil said by telephone. “The level of care required for the personal protective equipment with Ebola is higher than what most hospitals are used to.”

Nebraska’s unit has a dedicated individual who monitors the application and removal of protective equipment.

Less Time

Since receiving a second Ebola patient, the hospital has established a lab within the biocontainment unit to test blood and biological samples on site. That cuts down on the time it would take to sterilize the outside of a sample package before shipping it out for testing.

While the Nebraska facility has 10 beds distributed in five double rooms, Kratochvil said it would be difficult to put two Ebola patients in any one room given the equipment needed to treat them, and that the facility would most likely be able to handle two to three Ebola patients at a time, he said.

At the NIH Clinical Center in Maryland, Nina Pham is overseen by two nurses in her room at any one time, with other nurses outside watching to make sure procedures are followed.

Both Emory University and Nebraska had the advantage of knowing in advance that Ebola patients were coming, giving them time to prepare.

‘Advance Notification’

“They were fortunate that they had advance notification of that these patients were coming, versus the hospital in Texas where the patient just showed up,” said Mark Jarrett, chief quality officer at the North Shore-LIJ Health System, which has 17 hospitals in Long Island and New York. “It gave them a chance to make sure everything was put into place.”

Nurses and doctors need “ample training” in how to isolate and treat Ebola patients safely, including detailed training on how to take protective equipment off and observers who can help nurses and doctors do this, said Glatter, the emergency physician at Lenox Hill Hospital. Holding frequent drills or simulations is crucial for hospitals to be prepared for treating an Ebola patient in case one walks in the door.

Being able to treat an Ebola patient without spreading the disease “is direct proof of how well you are doing” in infection control, said Glatter.

See Emory Ebola Treatment Room Diagram: Ebola Treatment Room

Ebola virus is a favorite search over most search engines today. At our website, we tried to gather the best pieces of information for you. In case you liked the article above, we would recommend you to browse through our article gallery for more valuable take-away on the subject matter. Please remember the articles we present are collated from mainstream websites. Hopefully MSM is reporting accurate information as known today.