Thomas Eric Duncan (42), den første som er diagnostisert med ebola i USA, døde onsdag morgen. Samtidig ble en politimann i all hast kjørt til sykehus.
Bildet av politimannen Michael Mannig sier mye om hvorfor ebola sprer frykt. Mannig har vært inne i leiligheten hvor Duncan bodde. Man vet ikke positivt at han er smittet, men tar ingen sjanser. I løpet av 48 timer får man svaret. Bare synet av denne prosedyren – fullt smittevern – får folk til å få panikk.
I Spania er det et voldsomt oppstyr rundt avlivingen av hunden til den smittede sykepleiersken.
Spanske myndigheter mener hunden kan ha blitt smittet av ebola og tar ingen sjanser. Dyrevernere samlet seg foran boligblokken og har undertegnet online-opprop i hundretusentalls.
The fate of the dog ignited a frenzy online. More than 390,000 people signed the petitionto save his life. By comparison, about 150,000 people have signed a petition urging the Food and Drug Administration to fast-track research on a potential vaccine and treatment for Ebola.
Twitter erupted with pleas in both English and Spanish to save Excalibur’s life. Then, after Excalibur was killed, came posts using the hashtag #RIPExcalibur. Some also suggestedthat more attention was being focused on the dog than on Ebola’s human victims.
Studier viser at hunder kan bli smittet, men de viser ingen symptomer. De kan derfor trolig være smittebærere uten selv å bli syke. Det samme gjelder katter.
In a 2005 study of dogs in Gabon done after an Ebola outbreak in 2001-02, researchers found that dogs can be infected with the virus, but that they show no symptoms.
The study, published in Emerging Infectious Diseases, a C.D.C. journal, tested dogs in two villages in the heart of the Ebola outbreak, as well as dogs in a city with some human Ebola cases, dogs in distant villages and a control group of dogs in France. Of 159 dogs tested from the two villages, 40 had Ebola antigens in their blood. This rate was significantly higher than the prevalence of antigens found in dogs in the city with some human cases, three times higher than the dogs several hundred miles from the outbreak, and much higher than the dogs in France. Two out of 102 dogs tested in France had antigens for Ebola.
“Given the frequency of contact between humans and domestic dogs,” it said, “canine Ebola infection must be considered as a potential risk factor for human infection and virus spread.”