Editorial, Opinion Pieces Discuss Issues Surrounding Ebola Outbreak

The following editorial and opinion pieces discuss the continuing Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

The Guardian: The Guardian view on why the Ebola epidemic is spreading
Editorial Board

“Two diseases intersect in the West African epidemic, whose frightening scale is only just beginning to be fully grasped. One is Ebola itself. The other is the wasting away of the very organization tasked to fight such illnesses. While Ebola was incubating away in the animal population of the Guinea forest over the years, something akin to muscular dystrophy was eroding the tissue, bone, and nervous systems of the main international body set up to lead the response to epidemics, the World Health Organization. … [T]here must be a resolve never to let the WHO fall into such an eroded state again” (9/7).

Bloomberg Businessweek: Should Bill Gates Write a Big Check to Stop Ebola?
Diane Brady, senior editor for Bloomberg Businessweek

“The price tag for stopping Ebola is now $600 million. At least that’s how much United Nations officials estimate it would cost to halt the deadly epidemic still sweeping across West Africa. … Through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, [Bill Gates] has already given $1 million to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF last month to fight Ebola in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea. But with a personal net worth of $85.7 billion (according to the latest Bloomberg Billionaires Index), he could afford more…” (9/5).

Financial Times: In the face of Ebola a little panic is a healthy thing
Christopher Caldwell, senior writer at the Weekly Standard

“The outbreak of a new strain of the deadly Ebola virus in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and now Nigeria and Senegal has turned West Africa into a battleground between the promise of globalization and its terrors. … Those with the responsibility of addressing Ebola have oscillated between urgency and complacency, panic and cool. … It is good not to go overboard. Still, one has the sense that the course of treatment is being circumscribed by a reluctance to say anything that would disrupt the project of globalization. That taboo cannot last. Ebola is too frightening” (9/5).

Foreign Policy: We Could Have Stopped This
Laurie Garrett, senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations

“World, you still just don’t get it. The Ebola epidemic that is raging across West Africa, killing more than half its victims, will not be conquered with principles of global solidarity and earnest appeals. It will not be stopped with dribbling funds, dozens of volunteer health workers, and barriers across national borders. … The take-home message of the [WHO] road map boils down to this: Stopping Ebola is going to require a great deal of money, thousands more skilled health workers and logistics experts, massive communications efforts, huge food and nutrition support for the people of West Africa, and ‘coordination, coordination, coordination’…” (9/5).

Huffington Post: Opportunities Lost — Could Ebola Have Been Better Contained?
Mary Anne Mercer, professor of global health, Scott Barnhart, professor of medicine and global health, and Amy Hagopian, associate professor of public health at the University of Washington

“…The expanding Ebola epidemic underscores the urgency of making investments in the health systems of African governments. Global health initiatives of the last decade largely missed an opportunity to strengthen health care capacity in Africa. Will we have another chance with the next epidemic? Let’s make Ebola the last one to trample across the continent because there are no health systems to contain it” (9/5).

The KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report summarized news and information on global health policy from hundreds of sources, from May 2009 through December 2020. All summaries are archived and available via search.

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