When I was ten years old I watched the movie,”Outbreak” and holy crap was I terrified. A deadly Ebola-like virus being spread like a common cold! Terrifying!! Then I grew up and realized I live in a first world country and it’s really, really unlikely to happen.
Unfortunately, the last week has shown me that people are still using that film as the source of their Ebola hysteria. Or they are freaking out because the news said so. It’s the swine flu panic all over again but on steroids.
Here’s why you don’t need to be afraid: Ebola does not move through the air like the flu. This means that you are not going to catch the virus just because the patients are on American soil. Unless you plan on touching their blood, urine, feces, sweat, or salvia you have nothing to worry about.
It’s really easy to get caught up in the irrational hysteria when that’s all you hear on t.v. Hollywood makes scary movies about it. Everyone is afraid. We just have to slow down and remember this is not a village in Africa. We live in a first world country where lots of precautionary measures are being taken to ensure our safety. We live in a pretty safe bubble as far as infectious diseases go.
It should be noted that the two American patients who were infected have been given an experimental drug and doctors say they seem to be improving. So keep your fingers crossed.
Remember, as long as you don’t go traipsing down to the isolated unit at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta and start licking the patient, you’re safe (well, there go MY weekend plans!- ed). Everything is under control. Turn off the t.v.