#Ebola Update: With over 6000 deaths, President Obama urges Congress to approve more funding #science

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The CDC (with WHO) has released updated case counts for the Ebola Virus outbreak in West Africa as of December 3, 2014. The total confirmed cases is now over 17,000, with over 6,000 deaths from the disease. cdc123

President Obama has urged the US Congress to pass additional funding to fight the Ebola outbreak:

President Obama on Tuesday hailed U.S. efforts to develop a vaccine for Ebola and pleaded with Congress to pass his $6.2 billion request to combat the virus at home and abroad, warning that while efforts in the West African hot zone have shown progress, the fight is “not even close to being over.”

The United States has designated 35 hospitals across the country as Ebola treatment centers, which will dramatically increase the number of hospital beds available for treating ebola patients.

A potential Ebola case in Boston has initially tested negative for the ebola virus and positive for malaria.

During a Wednesday afternoon press conference, Dr. David Hooper, chief of the MGH Infection Control Unit, said initial tests for Ebola were negative, but did test positive for Malaria. While the patient will be retested over the next few days, the changes of a positive result were low.

Today, December 1st, is World AIDS Day!! #WAD2014

December 1st, 2014 is World AIDS Day. The theme this year is “Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-free Generation.” Visit here for more info on World AIDS day.

World AIDS Day is held on 1 December each year and is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died. World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day and the first one was held in 1988.

For a lot more info, events, and lifestream of the Whitehouse Event, visit AIDS.gov. Also check out CDC.gov for much more info on AIDS care and treatment, including the CDC initiative Vital Signs.

Learn Vital Information about HIV Medical Care

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#Ebola Update: CDC and WHO case count at 15,319 with 5,444 deaths

CDCThe CDC has updated case counts for the Ebola outbreak in West Africa and beyond. Link here to the World Health Organization’s most recent situation report (from Nov 21st).

#Ebola Update: Case counts, clinical trials, and live webcast about the ebola crisis in West Africa

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The CDC and WHO have updated the case counts for this week, with the total deaths in West Africa at 5,147.

The Liberian President has ended the state of emergency that was declared to control the ebola outbreak in that country.

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has announced it will begin accelerated clinical trials next month.

Doctors Without Borders said it will host clinical trials starting next month in three Ebola treatment centers experimenting with drugs for off-label uses, shortening the usual lengthy process used to find treatments through study with animals and healthy people.

More info on the trials from MSF:

The trials’ protocols are in the final stages of development and are designed with a simple target of 14-day survival and with broad inclusion criteria. The protocols will ensure that disruption to patient care will be minimal, that internationally-accepted medical and research ethical standards are respected, and that sound scientific data will be produced and shared for public good. The main principles and designs have been shared with the respective countries’ ethical authorities, with the goal of starting the first trials during December 2014. Initial results could be available in February 2015.

The two drugs, brincidofovir and favipiravir, were selected from WHO’s shortlist of potential Ebola treatments after careful review of safety and efficacy profiles, product availability, and ease of administration to patients.

Lastly, MSF will host a live webcast about the Ebola crisis in West Africa:

Join Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) on November 13 at 8:00 PM EST for a special update on the Ebola crisis in West Africa.

The panel will include MSF aid workers recently returned from assignments in Guinea and Liberia, along with members of MSF headquarters staff. This wide-ranging discussion will include first-hand accounts of working with patients and communities, the ongoing problem of fear and stigma in West Africa and here in the US, and the challenges facing the international community going forward.

Good news on the #Ebola outbreak! New ebola cases in Liberia are decreasing!

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Some good news about the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. The latest situation report from the World Health Organization shows that new cases in Liberia, the country with the highest number of cases to date, are decreasing!!! That is welcome news, and indicates that the fight against the outbreak is working!!

There appears to be some evidence of a decline at the national level in Liberia, although new case numbers remain high in parts of the country. While Liberia did not report any confirmed cases in its situation reports in the past week, it reported 89 probable cases.

There is also some good news about Ebola in the US! Info on the CDC website shows that almost all of the possible Ebola contacts in Dallas have completed monitoring, meaning they are beyond the crucial 21 days! Of the 177 potential contacts, only 27 are still being monitored! Woohoo!

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October 29th #Ebola update: CDC case counts and WHO situation report

cdcdThe CDC has reported updated case counts for the ebola outbreak, including an updated figure of 13,703 cases of ebola, with 7,637 lab-confirmed cases. The total death count stands at 4,922. This includes an updated figure based on better patient databases. New figures, charts, and maps can be found on the updated World Health Organization situation report here.

CDC fact sheet – difference between infections spread through air vs droplet #ebola

With all of the confusion about how ebola can be transmitted, here is a CDC fact sheet for infections spread through air vs droplet. EBOLA IS NOT SPREAD THROUGH THE AIR!

The first #Ebola case in Mali is much more unsettling than the #Ebola case in New York City

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The total number cases of Ebola in the USA is currently at 9, with only 2 of those being transmitted within the country. The number of cases in the Ebola outbreak in West Africa is somewhere around 10,000! The World Health Organization has reported the first Ebola case in the West African country of Mali. While most of NYC is currently suffering from fear-bola (due to the latest ebola case in an NYC doctor), the spread of the ebola virus to Mali is much more unsettling. It signals the continued spread of the outbreak within and to countries much less equipped to handle the virus than the United States. The US health system has proven quite resilient, with only 2 transmitted cases amongst the many contacts and healthcare workers that could have had potential exposure to the virus. Hopefully this will continue with increased contact tracing, monitoring, and awareness. I also hope that the case in Mali is isolated and does not spread, but it should serve as yet another warning that until the outbreak in West Africa is handled, more ebola cases will continue to crop up around the globe.

October 22 #Ebola Outbreak Update – CDC fact sheet, Could it be Ebola?

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The CDC and WHO have released updated case counts in the West African Ebola outbreak this week. However, WHO has also stated that these numbers are certainly a low estimate.

The WHO has said real numbers of cases are believed to be much higher than reported: by a factor of 1.5 in Guinea, 2 in Sierra Leone and 2.5 in Liberia, while the death rate is thought to be about 70 percent of all cases. That would suggest a toll of almost 15,000.

Luckily, the United States still only has 3 cases, emphasizing the ability of our healthcare system to effectively contain ebola. The CDC has also released a fact sheet for healthcare workers, ‘Could it be Ebola?‘ which is also interesting for non-healthcare workers.