3 Ways We Can Better Prepare For The Next Ebola Outbreak

November 18, 2014 7:21 PM

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3 Ways We Can Better Prepare For The Next Ebola Outbreak

Described in this short Partners in Healthanimation, contact tracing, the process of identifying and diagnosing any person who may have come into contact with an infected individual, is an urgent first priority for the initial Ebola case in a community. No matter if it's New York City or Monrovia, contact tracing is fundamental to stopping the spread of the disease and requires an ability to engage with people directly, and at a large and complex scale. Coordinated and effective communication between health workers, citizens and local government in contact tracing is important, and yet in the past outbreak it was far from seamless. This was especially true in the hardest hit areas of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.

Camilla Hermann, a New York City-based social entrepreneur, had been working in Liberia before the outbreak started, and came to understand intimately the challenges communities were facing. "Traditional methods of contact tracing could not scale to meet the challenges," Hermann recounts. "There wer...

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