EBOLA: AN EPIDEMIC HEIGHTENED BY POVERTY
Aid workers are under pressure in Sierra Leone as the Ebola epidemic becomes more uncontrollable.
Sierra Leone: Aid workers under pressure - The Ebola epidemic in West Africa is the worst outbreak of the virus since its discovery. If not controlled soon, several hundred thousand people could become infected with it. The worst affected countries are struggling to cope despite a lack of medical staff and equipment while the scientists are working frantically to develop drugs to treat and vaccines for the disease. Ebola in Sierra Leone is becoming more uncontrollable. The most basic of isolation facilities and knowledgeable personnel to treat the sick are lacking. Furthermore, aid workers are being met with great skepticism, because in addition to the job of treating the sick, they are also responsible for burying the dead. Global numbers: Healthcare - Epidemics and plagues are often the result of poor healthcare. Not only countries afflicted by poverty, but also more affluent countries have deficits when it comes to caring for the sick. In many industrialized countries, healthcare is of less than desirable quality as well. An Ebola vaccine? The first clinical trials of an Ebola vaccine are starting at Oxford's Jenner Institute. Professor Adrian Hill says he hopes to have a reliable vaccine for the deadly virus by the end of the year. Normally, thousands of tests must be carried out on thousands of human subject before a drug can be licensed, but this time, it's being tried on only 60 volunteers. But why has it taken so long for a vaccine to be tested? One reason the search for an Ebola vaccine has taken so long is because the outlook for earning money with it was dim. That forecast was enough to focus the pharmaceutical industry's efforts and resources elsewhere. Thailand: Living flood control - Thailand's southeaster province of Nakhon Si Tammarat is subject to weather extremes. There are droughts in the dry season and floods and landslides during the monsoons. The farmers there struggle to survive by building dams of roots and stones in the hope of stemming tides and currents. Farmers living the banks of the Tha Di river were able to plan and build these living weirs themselves. They were supported by the German development agency, GIZ, and scientists in Thailand. These natural solutions are known as ecosystem-based adaptations. Mauritius: Global Snack from Port Louis - The island city on the East coast of Africa is a melting pot for different cultures. Cuisine is one place where this is particularly obvious. Customers at "Chez Fred et Annick" really appreciate the tastes that result when French, Asian and Creole ingredients are mixed.