A look at a current news item through the lens of different titles available on GVRL.
By Michelle Eickmeyer
Ebola. Just the word sounds scary. A surge in an extremely deadly, contagious virus, with no medical cure or approved treatment plan is killing hundreds of people in western Africa. Two American volunteers in the area are now suffering from the disease, raising new questions about the possibility and practicality of evacuation. With more than 700 deaths, the world is currently experiencing the largest Ebola outbreak on record.
Here are five titles that look at Ebola from different perspectives:
Why is there no cure for the common cold? If my doctor is to be believed, it’s because it’s a virus. And while a cold is more of a nuisance than “problem,” many viruses are very, very serious. Take some time to review the vaccination section to see what advances and challenges exist in regard to viruses.
Who’s responsibility is it to care for and cure a disease which is affecting “someone else”? Particularly when that someone else is tens of thousands of miles away? With a special section on Sub-Saharan Africa, this title explores the arguments — both political and ethical — for participation and intervention.
Imagine the organization you work with is suddenly facing a crisis — a catastrophic, “breaking news” kind of crisis. What do you do? Just as importantly, what don’t you do? What is the role of Non-Government Organizations, or NGOs, like Samaritan’s Purse? Both Americans infected with Ebola this month are working in Africa with Samaritan’s Purse, which is in the process of removing all non-essential employees from the region. How would you proceed?
In 1976, a 27 year old researcher (and a colleague) identified the virus which was believed to be the cause of a number of deaths in Zaire. That virus was Ebola, and that researcher was Peter Piot. He would go on to have an illustrious career in medicine, including serving as Under-Secretary General of the United Nations, President of the International AIDS Society, Assistant Director of the World Health Organization’s Global Program on HIV/AIDS, and others. Dr. Piot has spent a career working to solve global heath crisis which originate in Africa. Learn more about his work on HIV/AIDS in this 2012 title.
What role does disease and treatment play in outbreaks of disease? Many cultures believe in “disease as punishment” philosophies; many others participate in global evangelism and mission work — how do these two groups of people interact and react toward large scale health concerns? Look further into the balance of these aspects in this title.
Michelle is an “anytime!” traveler and language enthusiast. She has degrees in talking from Central Michigan and Michigan State University. She is currently becoming a runner and used to play golf in high school.