The Ebola Epidemic: Disease Control and Medical Ethics

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History’s worst outbreak of the Ebola virus has killed more than 1000 people. The most urgent need is to stop the spread caused by sharing bodily fluids. A single airline passenger brought it to Lagos, Nigeria, a densely populated city where sanitation facilities are hard to come by. Medical officials face an ethical question: who should receive a tiny supply of drugs never tested on human beings, which might do more harm than good? We’ll give an update on a public health emergency that could go worldwide.

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Banner Image: A technician sets up an assay for Ebola within a containment laboratory. Samples are handled in negative-pressure biological safety cabinets to provide an additional layer of protection; Credit: Dr. Randal J. Schoepp