The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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Should We Take Ebola Seriously?

 

Recently, cases of Ebola Virus Disease, also known as EVD or just Ebola, were registered in North America, causing panic amongst Americans.

The recent death of a patient in Texas has only increased the intensity of this health scare, making it a topic of conversation amongst every community. While the entire world mourns the death of thousands being infected in West Africa, and many countries including the United States of America are doing their best to stay safe, some think this is an issue being blown out of proportion.

Although I have been following the news on Ebola, I initially was taking the topic lightly. I wondered if that was okay, or if I was wrong to do that. Just the other day, as I was chatting with a friend on Facebook, we were laughing about how he was getting sick, and kept teasing him by saying that he had Ebola. And this made me realize about how some people, including me, are underrating this issue.

After asking some students on the campus about their thoughts on the virus and how it is being portrayed, I received some mixed responses.

“If it can take someone’s life then yes it is serious,” said Brithney Bedu, a freshman majoring in liberal studies.

While Bedu stands with her opinion and says that she is well-read and updated on the subject, a few students have a different say.

“For now, it’s not that serious, all you need is proper safety precautions, and you’re good to go. I am more worried about the flu for now. And as for Ebola, I think it is the next swine flu, people will forget about it eventually,” said Anthony Yam, a fifth-year pharmacy student.

Seeing that the campus is buzzing with mixed responses, the world outside is in a mix-up as well. Certain schools in the states of Ohio and Texas have been shut down for sanitization and cleaning; surprisingly though, while a majority of the population is taking the issue seriously, not many know much about Ebola itself.

President Barack Obama has shown concerns on the issue and has  appointed Ron Klain as the Ebola czar. He has also approved Pentagon’s notion of sending troops to West Africa with an aim to contain the virus from spreading any further. Other authorities have also shown their support. What happens in the end is something we will have to wait to see.

The Center of Disease Control issued a statement saying, “We are open to ideas and we are doing anything and everything we can in order to keep the country and the planet in good health.”

What remains is the scary part about the virus. It has resulted in about 4,000 deaths and even at this very moment, thousands infected are battling for life. My question here is that, are we as a country well prepared to battle this epidemic? If yes, then how can we do this without having any collateral damage?

 


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