PROTECTING YOURSELF FROM EBOLA
Doug Carlston "The Surreal News"
There’s a lot of hype and fear here on the Internet regarding the Ebola outbreak, and you may be concerned about your safety, and that of your loved ones. I know I certainly have been, because my Wife has a suppressed immune system. I’ve done some research on the subject, and I thought I’d share with you what I have found, as well as some common sense thoughts about how to protect yourself if the disease becomes wide spread here in the United States. So here are some things you should know!!!
1) Don’t panic! We’ve been seeing an awful lot of hype on the internet, and since there are no missing airliners, the mainstream media is giving the issue far too much air time. I’ve even run across a number of people here on the internet claiming that this is some kind of conspiracy, that a secret group of people have unleashed the virus on the public to wipe out most of the population. If this is the case it’s a poor choice of diseases to do so.
2) The Ebola virus is not “Airborne,” meaning that unlike say the flu virus, you can’t catch it from the air. That’s not to say that it can’t mutate at some future point to become transmittable by the air, but for now you can only catch it by coming in direct contact with the body fluids of an infected person. You should avoid the blood, urine, feces, saliva, sweat, and other secretions of an infected person.
3) You can contract it from a “Needle stick,” the same as with other blood-borne diseases such as AIDS. Take the time to study the normal protocols for medical personnel and first responders, regarding the prevention of such accidents if you think you could be caring for an infected person.
4) While the virus is not particularly resilient outside the body, depending upon conditions such as humidity, etc., it can live for up to 2 days outside the body. Avoid contact with any surfaces you think might have been in contact with the body fluids of an infected person. Wear protective clothing such as a fluid resistant / impermeable gown, medical gloves, mask, and face shield if you might be cleaning an area that may have been in contact with an infected person. Take every precaution to prevent splashes, and spatters of cleaning liquids when doing so. Use only approved disinfectants more info can be found here. MANY CASES IN AFRICA HAVE BEEN THE RESULT OF PREPARING A BODY FOR BURIAL! If the disease becomes pandemic, take every precaution if handling a body!!!
5) All permeable surfaces such as pillows, bedding clothing etc., that may have become contaminated should be disposed of as a bio-hazard, or burned.
6) If you or a loved one may have been infected, seek medical attention IMMEDIATELY. While there is no cure, the most effective treatment is IV fluid as soon as possible. In general if an infected person receives medical treatment, the survival rate so far is around 50%. This could change if medical facilities become overwhelmed. Unfortunately there is already a shortage of intravenous saline solution . If you are concerned that a pandemic outbreak may make medical care unavailable… You can find veterinary rated saline solution here. (This is NOT rated for human use!!!) I wouldn’t recommend it unless you have “Doomsday fears” (Disclaimer; Don’t do this at home) The necessary equipment can be found here. Some info on how to do it can be found here. Again I’m making no medical recommendations, but now you have the information.
7) Remember that so far (10/08/14) there has only been ONE confirmed case in the US!!! This man was a Liberian national citizen, who had traveled to the US. The virus is NOT contagious unless symptoms are present. This includes a temperature of 101.5 degrees or higher, headache, muscle pain, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach pain, or unexplained bruising or bleeding. The infected person was not contagious at the time he was on the plane from Liberia. It’s been determined that he was in close enough contact with 20 persons while contagious, that they are at risk. They are being monitored. There are another 100 or so persons who have had a lower risk contact with him, and are also being monitored. To date approximately 2100 people have died in West Africa from the disease (About the same as Palestinian civilian deaths in the recent Israeli conflict.) The major problems there, have to do with cultural fear of medical care, and a severe lack of medical supplies.
8) About 10% of cases in Africa have been medical personnel who have contracted the disease. Those who have been returned to the US and other countries for treatment have so far survived. No cases anywhere have surfaced as a result of contact with these persons. Where proper protocol is observed, and supplies are available the rate of contagion seems to be low. These medical personnel seem to have contracted the disease more as a result of the lack of supplies in Africa. They may have been caring for an infected person for example, without access to protective clothing and gear.
I hope that while yes this disease COULD become a problem, I’ve been able to alleviate some of your fears. Even if it becomes wide spread, taking precautions in protecting yourself can greatly reduce your chances of contracting it. Be sure to prepare if you are very concerned by having protective gear such as medical gowns (Again fluid impermeable) available here, N95 rated face masks available here, a face shield available here. Hand sanitizer of course, and plenty of medical gloves available here.
Above all… Don’t panic!!!
Written by Doug Carlston