Kathryn Stinson, a South African epidemiologist, recently returned from fighting Ebola in Sierra Leone, travelled to Europe with Kaci Hickox, the American nurse later quarantined in a tent outside a New Jersey hospital. Stinson writes about the courage of health care workers there, her own 21 "post-mission" days, and the need to confront the "hysteria and stigma" surrounding returning staff from Ebola-affected areas with science and evidence-based insight.
Many of the most deadly diseases on earth - malaria, dengue and yellow fever, encephalitis and cholera - are highly climate sensitive, and are thriving as patterns of temperature, precipitation, and sea levels shift in their favor. They are spreading to new parts of the globe, including the US. Instead of celebrating the bravery of the nursing profession, politicians and media reacted to the Ebola outbreak by blaming nurses for their carelessness.
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Cuba’s commitment of 461 doctors and nurses to combat Ebola in West Africa is the largest single-country offer of healthcare workers to date to combat the crisis. But, this is not the first example of Cuba’s “unprecedented medical solidarity.” Cuba has also sent medical teams to assist the peoples of Guatemala, Pakistan, Indonesia, and Haiti in this past decade. And Cuba has a lot to teach the world about disaster relief and epidemic control.
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