(Question could be – Critically analyse the evolution and consequences of current outbreak of Ebola virus disease. Describe the measure being taken by the government of India to deal with it.)
Ebola virus disease is a severe haemorrhagic fever caused by viral infection, illness is extremely fatal as the death rate can go up to 90%.
The origin of the deadly Ebola virus has been traced to Africa. The scientist who discovered the Ebola virus from a blood sample of a dying Catholic nun way back in 1976 in Congo warns that the latest outbreak is caused by the deadliest strain of the virus — 9 out of 10 infected will die from it.
How do humans get infected with the virus?
Any direct contact with bodily fluids of the infected person like blood coming through broken skin and mucus membranes, stool, urine, saliva, semen and so on can cause the infection. The outbreak starts when a person comes into contact with an infected animal.
What are the symptoms?
Life Cycle of Ebola Virus
What is the treatment?
There is no vaccine or specific treatment of the infection. Severely ill patients get dehydrated frequently and need intravenous fluids or oral rehydration. Patients should be isolated from others and treated by health workers taking strict precautions.
What are its Consequences?
- West African countries — Liberia, Nigeria and Sierra Leone are most affected countries. As on August 6, as many as 1,779 people (with 1,134 confirmed cases) were infected and the mortality figurewas 961.
- Ebola outbreak is affecting the local economies in West Africa where the outbreak is occurring.
- Lost lives but also socioeconomic disruption and a high risk of spread to other countries.
Precautions/Preventive measures adopted by the Government of India
- Proper screening of international flyers coming to India from Ebola virus-affected countries to prevent the deadly virus from spreading.
- Facilities at the airports to isolate and cure the possibly infected travellers to avoid infection to other citizens and patients”.
- Spreading information regarding the virus throughout the country to create more awareness about it.