Disease prevention is the aim of all scientists and medical practitioners or health care providers. Disease prevention averts human suffering as well as avoids economic costs, resulting from ill health. Ebola is no exception. Healh care providers, medical practitioners and scientists are working day and night to come up with Ebola preventative measures. Since so far there is no known curative measure for Ebola, and mortality resulting from Ebola is as high as 90 percent of all Ebola disease, prevention measures are the only escape. People wonder what it means when researchers talk about Ebola prevention. Prevention measures focus on ensuring that uninfected individuals do not come into contact with the Ebola virus (Baddley, & Salvaggio, 2013). Therefore, prevention means precautions that help curb spread and infection of Ebola virus. These precautions can be put into three categories, primary, secondary and tertiary.
Ebola Primary Prevention Measure
To begin with, one of the Ebola preventative measures is controlling rodent population. Rodents are the currently known animals that transmit this virus to human beings. Therefore, controlling rodent population would ensure that chances of humans coming into contact with the virus are minimal. To control the population of rodents, they can employ measure to avoid rodent reproduction or kill them when their number increases. That way, the virus transmitters will be few to be a risk to the human race. Secondly, on the same note, human beings should ensure that rodents do not live in homesteads or workplaces. Rodents should not be allowed to get into houses where they can easily transmit the virus to human beings. If rodents come to live among human beings, in houses and workplaces, the places are close to human operations and thus increase the risk of infection (Bavari et al., 2013). When they live in the fields, the chances of coming into contact with their fluids are minimal, thus low risk of infection. In the same light, human beings should ensure hygiene is maintained. In cases where rodents invade houses, the area that they have been to ought to be cleaned to ensure their waste does not infect humans with any virus that they may have.
Ensuring one does not travel to areas where breakouts are known. Africa, being the leading continent in cases of Ebola outbreaks, one ought to seek information on areas of high risk to avoid travelling to such areas. In addition to areas of high risk, areas that are currently suffering from outbreaks should also be avoided. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDCP can avail such information to help curb Ebola infection.
One should avoid eating uninspected meat. Since the known cases of Ebola outbreaks result from contact with nonhuman primates, it is wise to avoid eating uninspected meat or animal products, more so those which source is unknown.
Vaccination can be an ultimate preventative measure of Ebola. So far, there are no known or accepted Ebola vaccinations on humans but it has been successful in nonhuman primates. This is a promising development since scientists are at work to ensure they come up with a vaccine to prevent Ebola infection. Vaccination should be on healthy individuals, mostly in Ebola risk zones to ensure they do not get infected (Becker, et al., 2013).
Lastly, educating people about Ebola and Ebola virus infection is another primary prevention measure. People living in Ebola risk zones should learn on Ebola infection prevention methods as well as Ebola infection handling. That way these people will know Ebola symptoms and will know what they should do to avoid more infections. Since most of the areas where Ebola outbreaks has made great impact are villages with poor medical infrastructure, and few or no medical care providers, educating people in such regions will help them be able to prevent outbreaks from occurring. This is because; if one person gets infected, the rest will ensure the infection is not transmitted to others. They will also be able to help the infected person seek medical care immediately. That is why knowledge is power. With Ebola, information can avoid outbreak occurrence.
Ebola Secondary Prevention Measures
Secondary prevention of Ebola is done after an outbreak. When the risk factors have been diagnosed, the medical practitioners would engage in the ways of controlling the spread so that the development is slowed down.
Washing hands regularly. For Ebola virus, just like any other contagious diseases, hygiene is one of the preventative measures. One ought to regularly wash hands with clean water and soap, or alcohol hand rubs if soap and water are unavailable. Alcohol content in the alcohol hand rubs should be above 60% to ensure the virus cannot withstand it.
One should avoid coming to contact with body fluids of infected people. Health care providers and other persons taking care of infected persons should ensure that they avoid any contact with fluids from the infected persons.
One should follow the procedures for infection control to the letter. That is; to wear protective gloves, gowns, masks and eye shields. Another thing is disinfection of all equipment and proper disposal of the same. It also includes isolation of infected individuals.
One should not handle remains from an Ebola patient. Bodies of Ebola patients are also infectious, thus should be handled and buried by experts using special safety equipment.
Ebola Tertiary Prevention Measures
Tertiary prevention refers to that prevention level in which a patient is rehabilitated and returned to a state of maximum use under minimum risk of recurrence of mental or physical disorder. For Ebola, there are a few suggested tertiary preventive measures. Doctors suggest that the Ebola patients be given supportive care that involves the provision of relief of the symptoms of Ebola (Bush, 2014). This process is applied to give the body of a patient time to automatically respond by fighting the virus. The other thing that constitutes tertiary prevention includes using antibiotics, oxygen and intravenous fluids to counter the chemical deviations in the body as a result of the Ebola. Oxygen, as well as breathing machines help patients to breath since they face breathing difficulties. Intravenous fluids injected into the patients’ body systems to replace the lost water as a result of diarrhea. Antibiotics are used in the prevention of bacterial infections. Good nursing is needed at this level (support care), so that lives are not lost. Medicines are used in the prevention of the seriousness of Ebola to help fight other diseases that the patient may have to limit the body weakness. This also includes helping blood to clot, control fever, and ensuring that the blood pressure of a patient remains within the expected range. Proper care at this tertiary level helps to retain the life of a patient.
Whenever a disease is placed in the category of medicine, handling it becomes hard. Medics say that about ninety percent of Ebola patients die. This means that the chances of a patient surviving are low because there are no drugs in existence that can kill the Ebola virus. However, scientists are working day and night to see that they invent a drug to contain this Ebola virus. It is sad that many people are dying around the world as a result of this deadly virus. It is the hope of the humanity, though, that a drug will soon come into existence. Thanks to the world researchers and financiers to such lifesaving projects, we believe that like many other drugs that were developed, Ebola too will have an end someday.