Can you catch Ebola from a doorknob?

The Ebola epidemic has been taking over the news. Do we really have all the facts? If Twitter and Facebook were our only sources of news, half of us would be dressed in protective clothing. We are a tweet away from getting the virus online. The fear mongering has to stop. Are we just caught up in consuming social media that we fail to do the research ourselves?

According to Twitter news sources say the Ebola virus could reach the UK and France by the 24th of October. Why are we so afraid? As much as this is a biological outbreak, it is also a psychological one. We have done our own research because we have seen how important it is to educate yourself. Below are some credible sources on the Ebola crisis:

How do we know it’s credible?

World Health Organization – WHO

The World Health Organization has continuing Global Alert & Response Operation, which tracks the virus situation, sounds an alarm when necessary, and provides response logistics regarding the outbreak. It also has stories about people and towns that have overcame the virus.

Centres for Disease Control and Prevention – CDC

A medical epidemiologist, Dr. Michael Kinzer who has lead a CDC medical team has actually travelled to Guinea to help fight Ebola. “Ebola is terrifying, but it is not as easy to catch as people think,” speaking to delegates.

 The Hospital for Tropical Diseases

Offers foreign travel & health advice for Londoners.

 Doctors Without Borders

Doctors without Borders provide statistics on the latest news and updates from each country affected in West Africa and interviews from aid volunteers and doctors. It also provides charts regarding the widespread and intense transmission and dates as well.

The most effective way of stopping the virus is isolating patients and tracking people infected to stop transmission, due to the fact that it is a highly infectious disease because it takes a small amount of the virus for an infection to take place. Until a person starts showing symptoms, only then is it contagious.

So can you actually catch Ebola from touching a doorknob? NO. It is not an airborne disease; experts call it a “caregivers disease.” It is however, transmitted through direct intimate interactions with sick people or bodies which have become symptomatic.

SOURCES

who.int/csr/disease/ebola/en/
cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/
thehtd.org

doctorswithoutborders.org/our-work/medical-issues/ebola

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