Ebola virus disease: The ‘Black Swan’ in West Africa

From Tropical Doctor

Ebola virus disease (EVD) was first discovered in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1976, and by 2013 had caused approximately 20 recorded outbreaks across East and Central Africa. In each case containment was achieved within a few months and after fewer than 500 confirmed cases. The world assumed that EVD was too efficient at killing its hosts, doomed to quickly burn out wherever it arose. The 2014 West African outbreak has changed everything. It was the ‘Black Swan’2 – the inevitable consequence we did not foresee. By mid-December 2014, there had been over 17,000 reported cases spread across nearly every region in three adjacent countries, and approximately 6,000 people are known to have died. This paper documents the origins and spread of the Ebola virus disease (EVD) and examines the recent outbreak in 2014, with consideration of treatment and plans for prevention in the future.

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Article details
Colin Brown, Paul Arkell, and Sakib Rokadiya
bola virus disease: the ‘Black Swan’ in West Africa
Trop Doct January 2015 45: 2-5, first published on December 18, 2014 doi:10.1177/0049475514564269





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