There are suspected Ebola cases in Europe, Asia, and North America but none are confirmed. Public health officials are relatively unconcerned about Ebola becoming a big problem in the developed world. That’s because outbreaks persist in countries with poor sanitation and a shortage of resources to contain them, not in resource-rich places like the US. For this reason, spread within Africa is really what public health officials are worried about. “Our first concern is that this is going to go into adjacent areas through people traveling in the region,” said Daniel Bausch, associate professor at the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, who is working with the WHO and MSF on the outbreak. “In the short term, the main vector is the traveler: local people traveling from one village to the next, on more regional scale, plane travelers.” This pie chart shows the final destinations of travelers originating in the three countries currently most affected by Ebola. As you can see, travel from Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia within the continent is much more prevalent than travel elsewhere. All countries in West Africa are already on alert. National authorities in Ghana, Nigeria, Togo and the Côte d’Ivoire are working with the WHO on prevention efforts and monitoring potential cases. To do this, contact tracing is essential, said Bausch. More
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