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Published On: Thu, Aug 14th, 2014

Ebola: Handshake, Symbol of Peace, Now Means of Death


John Dania
LAGOS AUGUST 14TH (URHOBOTODAY)-Ebola first appeared in 1976 in 2 simultaneous outbreaks, in Nzara, Sudan, and in Yambuku, Democratic Republic of Congo. The latter was in a village situated near the Ebola River, from which the disease takes its name.
Ebola is introduced into the human population through close contact with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected animals. In Africa, infection has been documented through the handling of infected chimpanzees, gorillas, fruit bats, monkeys, forest antelope and porcupines found ill or dead or in the rain forest.
Ebola then spreads in the community through human-to-human transmission, with infection resulting from direct contact (through broken skin or mucous membranes) with the blood, secretions, organs or other bodily fluids of infected people, and indirect contact with environments contaminated with such fluids. Burial ceremonies in which mourners have direct contact with the body of the deceased person can also play a role in the transmission of Ebola.
Men who have recovered from the disease can still transmit the virus through their semen for up to 7 weeks after recovery from illness.
Health-care workers have frequently been infected while treating patients with suspected or confirmed EVD. This has occurred through close contact with patients when infection control precautions are not strictly practiced.
Among workers in contact with monkeys or pigs infected with Reston ebola virus, several infections have been documented in people who were clinically asymptomatic.
Thus, RESTV appears less capable of causing disease in humans than other Ebola species.
In Nigeria today, many dread this deadly virus so much so that no one wants to shake hands with friends or loved ones.
A lady walked into my office using her body to open the door and quickly applied hand sanitizers. Another man paid to occupy the entire back sit in a commuter bus.
Which way Nigeria?
In as much as there are experimental drugs, many cannot even sleep at night, they stay up praying against this virus.
I must say, this has thought Nigerians two things; To be more hygienic and Become closer to God.
In unity we would stand as one to end this and it would become history.

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