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Ebola Airport Screening Finding Few Suspected Cases in US

MEDSCAPE MEDICAL NEWS by Larry Hand                                                                        Dec. 9, 2014

Airport exit screening in West Africa and entry screening in the United States have identified few persons potentially infected with Ebola virus, according to an article published online December 9 in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) publication Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.


 Number of travelers arriving from Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone who were screened for Ebola at US airports, by state and county of destination (October 11 - November 10, 2014). Source: CDC

Of 80,000 travelers who have departed from West Africa since Ebola-specific screening began, 1993 people have been screened on arrival at one of five US airports. Of those, 86 passengers were referred to the CDC public health officers; only seven have shown symptoms and been referred for evaluation. None eventually wound up with an Ebola diagnosis.

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Cooler box-equipped motorbikes donated to UN will speed up Ebola testing process in West Africa

UNITED NATIONS NEWS CENTRE                                                                             Dec. 4, 2014
Four hundred motorbikes equipped with cooler boxes will help speed up deliveries of blood samples to laboratories from remote areas of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone and reduce the waiting time for Ebola test results, thanks to a donation today from Germany to the United Nations.

Four hundred cooler box-equipped motorbikes for the Ebola Response were officially handed over to the UN Humanitarian Response Depot by German Ambassador to Ghana Ruediger John, and will be used to bring blood samples to labs in the most affected areas of Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Guinea. UNMEER Photo/Martine Perret

At UN Headquarters, meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told reporters that the immediate priorities of the United Nations are to stop the virus and to treat all the people who have Ebola. “We have to ensure that all essential services are provided, and also we have to help them preserve their social and political stability, and keeping a further outbreak from happening.”

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Notable Absence of New Ebola Quarantines at New York Area Airports

NEW YORK TIMES    By Anemona Hartocollis                                                          NOV. 24, 2014

NEW YORK   ...since Kaci Hickox, a nurse, flew into Newark’s airport on Oct. 24 and was kept at a hospital for three days, no one else has been caught up in the quarantine dragnet at the New York and New Jersey airports.

The absence of quarantines is striking, not only because both governors emphatically defended the policy as a necessary precaution, but also because most people returning from Ebola-stricken countries arrive in the United States through Kennedy and Newark Liberty International Airports.

...New York and New Jersey officials say no one coming through the two airports since Ms. Hickox has reported direct contact with Ebola patients.

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U.S. was ill-equipped to handle Ebola rescues, State Dept. contract reveals


For now, the world has to rely on a small, Georgia-based flight company for Ebola evacuations. (AP)

Life-saving gear needed to fly sick patients was in storage as epidemic grew - by Jason Sickles - November 11, 2014

The air ambulance operation tasked with rescuing U.S. Ebola victims from West Africa was initially slowed by bureaucratic bungling and is now at risk of being overburdened as thousands of American troops deploy to fight the deadly disease.

Yahoo News has learned the U.S. government spent millions last decade to develop and build two of the world’s only isolation chambers for flying contagious patients — but as the epidemic raged in West Africa this summer and American aid workers there needed evacuating, the medical inventions were packed away in a small-town Georgia warehouse.

The troubling lack of preparedness by federal agencies forced the State Department to put up $4.9 million as part of a rushed contract to employ a commercial aviator to safely evacuate Ebola-infected Americans from West Africa.

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U.S. heightens Ebola screening for travelers from Mali

Mali:  U.S to begin enhanced screening; France warns its citizens against travel

(Two stories, scroll down)

 REUTERS                                                   NOV. 16, 2014

The United States will begin enhanced Ebola screening on Monday for travelers whose trips started in the African nation of Mali, the government said on Sunday.

Mali has been added to the list of countries (Sierra Leone and Liberia)  whose travelers face heightened screening because there have been a number of confirmed cases of Ebola there in recent days, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Department of Homeland Security said in a statement.

"A large number of individuals may have been exposed to those cases," it said. There are no direct flights to the United States from Mali, but an average of 15 to 20 travelers a day start their trips there, the statement said.

Complete story
REUTERS                                                                                                                  Nov. 16, 2014

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Ebola Travel Bans Buy Only Time, Not Safety

BLOOMERG BUSINESS WEEK                                                                                            Nov. 4, 2014

...Blocking most travel from Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, where a total of more than 13,000 people have been infected with Ebola since the outbreak began in March, would only modestly reduce how long it takes for the virus to reach new countries, according to mathematical simulations published in the journal Eurosurveillance. For example, stopping 71 percent of travelers from entering other nations in Africa from the three countries in which Ebola is widespread would delay a case from appearing elsewhere on the continent by only 30 days, according to the model. ...

Medical staff wait for passengers arriving from Guinea at the airport in Abidjan on Oct. 20,as Ivory Coast's airline resumed flights to the three west African countries worst-hit by Ebola. Photograph by Issouf Sanogo/AFP via Getty Image

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Structural Adaptivity, Before and After Thoughts


As a means of concluding these writings on Structural Adaptivity and Resilience, following are some of the background thoughts, with recent revision, that led me to my proposals. Originally, my writings were directed at city and regional planning. However now I realize they are also about resilience.  I hope my submittals will be helpful.  I will try to write more soon.


Time.  Planners, resilience makers, and all other leaders and professionals dealing with the built environment must focus on long time spans.  In order to have significant impact on the future of our world, we must recognize that only by looking at big chunks of history and big chunks of future time can we really see the reality of what is going on.  Likewise, we need to do so in order to see the reality of what needs to be done.


Typical urban or regional plans target a future some 20 years ahead.  Moreover, they typically are based on past trends of 20 years or so.  However, our world does not change in 20-year cycles.  Twenty years is a very short time period in the flow of transformation.


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The whole world relies on this one U.S. company to fly Ebola patients

WASHINGTON POST                          Oct 28, 2014
By Josh Hicks
When it comes to transporting Ebola victims by air, the world relies on just one small U.S. company.

Phoenix Air has been using the isolation system below this aircraft to transport Ebola patients. (EPA/BRANDEN CAMP)

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DHS’s Coordinated Response to Ebola

 DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY                                                        OCT. 24, 2014

WASHINGTON --In nine days of enhanced screening at five major American airports of passengers from West African countries hit by Ebola, only three of the 552 arrivals had high temperatures, according to Department of Homeland Security statistics. The passengers went through seconary screening and none of them was found to have Ebola, according to a DHS document.


The figures were in a chart contained in DHS statement describing the agency's role in helping counter Ebola with

enhanced screening at airports. The chart covered the period from October 11 when the screening started, through

October 20.

See complete statement and chart.

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New York and New Jersey Tighten Ebola Screenings at Airports

NEW YORK TIMES                    Oct. 24, 2014

The announcement comes one day after an American doctor, who had worked in Guinea and returned to New York City earlier in October, tested positive for Ebola and became the first New York patient of the deadly virus.

“A voluntary Ebola quarantine is not enough,” said Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York. “This is too serious a public health situation.”

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