We gave little notice to the last Ebola outbreak, which proved to be justified, because it was dealt with rather swiftly, and largely contained in short order (at least by Wakanda standards).
But literally days after that outbreak was contained, another one (and not the same one) has cropped up in a section of Congo that's a double-whammy:
Highly populated, and so war-torn dangerous there is minimal ability for anyone to get a handle on containing the virus.
Imagine trying to fight a gasoline refinery fire in Detroit.
During a (Some) Black Lives Matter riot.
(EBOLAVILLE) The latest Ebola epidemic in the Democratic Republic of the Congo is shaping up to be the most dangerous and difficult test of the world’s ability to contain the disease since the catastrophic West African outbreak in 2014 and 2015.Remember two things:
Like an outbreak earlier this year, in the western part of the country, cases have been reported across multiple locations, disease transmission is taking place in cities where hundreds of thousands of people live, and there’s the potential for the virus to spread across several international borders.But this outbreak is occurring in a part of the Congo that has long been a conflict zone, with over 1 million displaced people, scores of armed combatant groups, and “red zones” where outsiders hoping to contain a deadly disease may not be able to travel.The outbreak was declared in North Kivu on Aug. 1, a week after the previous epidemic was deemed contained. Genetic analysis of viruses from the two show that while they are caused by the same species of ebola viruses, Ebola Zaire, they are not linked.
Two weeks into this outbreak, the toll has already surpassed that of the earlier epidemic, which was centered around Bikoro, near DRC’s western border. There were 54 cases and 33 deaths over roughly four months in the Bikoro outbreak. As of Tuesday, there were 73 confirmed and probable cases and 43 deaths in North Kivu, and the case count is rising steadily.
North Kivu is in northeastern Congo, near the border with Uganda and Rwanda. It’s the country’s most populous province, with 8 million people. It is also its most dangerous.
Under a scoring system used by the U.N. to determine the level of risk for its personnel in conflict zones, North Kivu is at level 4. Level 5 means the U.N. must evacuate; it is simply too perilous to be present.
1) 34 doublings to go from nobody to everybody. (This one is now between 6 and 7.)
That's just basic Epidemic Math.
2) In fifteen days, this outbreak has surpassed what the last one did in four months.
b) transmissibility in this region
c) difficulty of doing what's necessary to halt the spread
It's still small potatoes, but moving roughly eight times faster than the last outbreak means it bears some scrutiny.
If it gets to a population center/starts hurdling international borders, we're off to the races again like it's 2014.
The only saving grace is that this time around we don't have an illegal alien Muslim idiot riding shotgun on the anti-apocalypse circus.
Panic is never a good idea.
Calm, rational forethought is always a good idea.
Think happy thoughts, and hopefully MSF/WHO manage to corral this before gets away from them, and it turns into another wildfire sh*tshow.
Dealing with a biblically epic pandemic may very well be the last thing on your preparedness things-to-do, for good and prudent reasons.
But it should still be on the list.
I'll be very happy not to have to do another round of coverage of the Insane Clown Posse.
WIKIPEDIA page link for this outbreak.
Bonus fact to drive the point home:
"The area in question, North Kivu, is also currently in the middle of the Kivu Conflict, a military conflict with thousands of displaced refugees. The affected areas host over one million displaced people and shares borders with Rwanda and Uganda, with frequent cross border movement due to trade activities. The prolonged humanitarian crisis and deterioration of the security situation is expected to affect any response to the outbreak.
There are about 70 armed military groups in North Kivu. The armed fighting has displaced thousands of individuals." - Wikipedia
Because what you really want is an area crawling with teenagers with AK-47s, and refugee camps cram-packed with potential infectees, right next to two international borders.
And the virus, so far in this outbreak, is enjoying an approximate 80% mortality rate.
What could possibly go wrong...?